FFD Jan-Feb 2014

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We don our hard hats to meet Westmorland buyer Alexander Evans as the M5 Gloucester Services take shape

Robert Thain of House of Bruar on the buying clout that comes with 1.4m visitors a year

Anne Wigmore makes the case for science in cheese-making January-February 2014 · Vol 15 Issue 1

PICK OF THE PICKLES Discover dozens of new products in our annual round-up of savoury accompaniments CHEF’S SELECTION 43 Burrow Hill cider vinegar, Jeeny’s palm sugar and Trealy Farm Charcuterie’s air-dried ham are on Sam Moody’s shopping list at The Bath Priory

A TOAST TO 35 THE ROAST The best new ground and whole bean coffees from specialist roasters


AOP, the sign of special products... A traditional cheese

Appellation d'origine protégée

The cheese of western Switzerland, with a delicate, distinguished flavour. Made since at least 1115 AD in and around the small town of Gruyères, today it is still produced by village cheese dairies in western Switzerland according to the traditional recipe. Le Gruyère AOP owes its characteristic delicacy and flavour to the top quality raw milk produced by cows fed on grass in the summer and hay in winter, coupled with the skill of the mastercheesemakers. No less than 400 litres of fresh milk are needed to produce a single wheel weighing around 35kg. During the slow maturation process, which takes several months in special cheese cellars, the wheels are turned regularly and rubbed down with saltywater. The maturing process lasts between five and 18 months.

Each cheese is systematically identified by the number of the mould and code of the cheese dairy. The day and month of production are also noted on the wheel. These black markings are made with casein, the cheese protein. No artificial additives are involved here either.

Le Gruyère AOP takes pride of place on any cheese platter. It makes for a delicious desert and can be used in tasty warm dishes. What’s more, no real fondue would be complete without genuine Gruyère AOP.

From this time on, the name ‘Gruyère AOP’ and the code of the production facility appears on the heel of each wheel of Gruyère AOP as an effective way of preventing fakes and guaranteeing authenticity. This technique employs branding irons, which give an indentation in the wheel. It is this marking that makes it possible to identify and trace each individual cheese.

The humidity and rind washing process develops the characteristic appearance of the cheese and assists in bringing the cheese into full maturity. This is what gives Le Gruyère AOP its famous, distinct flavour. It’s no great surprise that this authentic gift of nature is appreciated by cheeselovers throughout the world.

www.gruyere.com ruyere.com Cheeses from Switzerland. Switzerland. Naturally. 2 January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1


What’s new this month:


cured ham. We saw third-generation pig farmer Charles Bowes tending fat porkers that were enjoying contented open-air lives, while professional chef Simon Benning explained how he BOB FARRAND skilfully hand-salts de-boned pork portions before forming them into nice round, sliceable shapes. What the movie didn’t mention According to the Office for National was that Benning works for one of Statistics, the spend in independent our largest pork processors, which shops during December rose 8.1% also supplies Waitrose and Morrisons. year on year. By comparison, sales in So did Simon actually make my ham large stores grew just 2.6%. Delis, using one of Charles’s pigs? food halls and farm shops appear A Waitrose TV ad introduces us to have performed even better, with to turkey producer Jonathan Martin several reporting increases closer to of Fulstrow Farm, Lincolnshire. The 20% in the build-up to Christmas. store’s website tells us this is “the Encouraging news, particularly story of giving the perfect Christmas in light of the mega-millions spent dinner, following Jonathan and his by multiples on advertising last free range bronze-feathered turkeys month. What a nauseating diatribe of throughout the year, finishing with eyewash that proved to be. his family tucking As Candice into a traditional Fonseca of Voiceovers introduced Christmas dinner. Liverpool’s Delifonseca says us to passionate foodies, Jonathan took to assure us that even over the reins on page 4, the multiples’ fine though supermarkets are at Lincs Turkeys from his father, food brochures giant businesses, their supplying were “full of best foods are ‘lovingly Waitrose with items that made by artisans’ turkeys for are our bread over 20 years.” and butter Heartwarming. at Christmas”. It was the year What the TV voice-over fails to supermarkets woke up to the fact mention is that Waitrose also source that discerning consumers prefer to bronze-feathered free-range turkeys know who makes their food. So they from farms in Yorkshire, East Anglia, decided to tell us. Or did they? Southern Ireland and Essex. So did We were tempted with turkeys, Jonathan actually rear my turkey? puddings and all manner of luxuries, They also forgot to mention his each apparently hand-reared or farm is owned by Bernard Matthews crafted by caring producers or Holdings Ltd. Remind me now, didn’t celebrity chefs. Comforting voiceovers old Bernard make those tasty artisan, introduced us to passionate foodies, hand-crafted Turkey Twizzlers? presumably to assure us that even Bootiful! though supermarkets are giant businesses, their best foods are “lovingly made by artisans”. Bob Farrand is publisher of Fine Food A Tesco online video sold the Digest and chairman of the Guild of message convincingly for its Finest dry Fine Food








Tel: 01747 825200 Fax: 01747 824065 info@finefoodworld.co.uk www.finefoodworld.co.uk

Editor: Mick Whitworth Assistant editor: Michael Lane News editor: Patrick McGuigan Art director: Mark Windsor Editorial production: Richard Charnley Contributors: Clare Hargreaves, Lynda Searby, Anne Bruce, Stuart Key

ADVERTISING advertise@finefoodworld.co.uk Sales manager: Sally Coley Advertisement sales: Becky Stacey, Ruth Debnam Published by Great Taste Publications Ltd and the Guild of Fine Food Ltd Chairman/publisher: Bob Farrand Managing director/associate publisher: John Farrand Director/membership secretary: Linda Farrand Marketing & circulation manager: Tortie Farrand Administrators: Charlie Westcar, Julie Coates, Karen Price Accounts: Stephen Guppy, Denise Ballance, Vicky Missen

Guild of Fine Food, Guild House, 23b Kingsmead Business Park, Shaftesbury Road, Gillingham, Dorset SP8 5FB United Kingdom Fine Food Digest is published 11 times a year and is available on subscription for £45pa inclusive of post and packing. Printed by: Blackmore, Dorset, UK © Great Taste Publications Ltd and The Guild of Fine Food Ltd 2014. Reproduction of whole or part of this magazine without the publisher’s prior permission is prohibited. The opinions expressed in articles and advertisements are not necessarily those of the editor or publisher. The publisher cannot accept responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts, photographs or illustrations.

p43 p43 p37


Editor’s choice

Selected by Mick Whitworth

Dell’ami Bellota Iberico Sobrasada www.cheesecellar.co.uk

I’m a big fan of ’nduja, the fiery, soft, meltable Italian sausage that saw a little surge in interest two or three years ago. You don’t need much to add a hot, meaty kick to pasta or rice. Sobrasada has been familiar to UK delis for longer, and with the softer spicing of paprika rather than hot peppers does a similar job a little more gently. Which means you can get more of the fibrous, meaty texture without overburdening your tastebuds. This Bellota Iberico version is a tasty addition to Cheese Cellar’s Mediterranean-led dell’ami range.


For regular news updates from the industry's favourite magazine visit:

www.ffdonline.co.uk Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014


fine food news After outperforming multiples over Christmas, independents hope 2014 will see a return to growth

Cautious optimism after surge in festive sales By PATRICK McGUIGAN

Fine food retailers reported strong sales over Christmas but still think the economy has a way to go before it has ‘turned the corner’ following the downturn. A survey of Guild of Fine Food members found that delis, farm shops and food halls saw sales grow at a much faster rate than the major supermarkets over the festive period, with many reporting double digit growth. Strong performers included Rushfields Farm Shop in Sussex, Delilah Fine Foods in Nottingham, Good Taste deli in London and the Cheese Plate in Herts, which all saw sales grow by 20% or more. Corner on the Square in Scotland, London’s Debeauvoir Deli and Town Mill Cheesemonger in Lyme Regis all grew at between 10-20%. Victoria Robertshaw, co-owner of Keelham Farm Shop in Skipton, said sales had been strong across all parts of the business. “Christmas was very positive, with year-on-year sales growth of 8%,” she said. “There was a strong percentage growth in the shop, deli and in home and garden, but the butchery performance really stood out, with growth of 10.45%.” The overwhelming majority of respondents were optimistic about trading prospects for 2014 with most planning to expand their businesses by extending their premises or by developing new channels such as online, catering and events. However, most also said that consumer confidence was still fragile and the economy had not yet ‘turned the corner’. “I think there are some positive signs but it is still too early to tell,” said Huw Marks, owner of speciality tea retailer Teapod. “Consumer confidence takes time to develop but eventually it reaches a critical mass and things move quite quickly. “We are not there yet but I am confident it will happen in 2014 – if only because the government timetable for re-election means they have to stimulate a more positive environment.” Retailers reported that shoppers were still cautious when it came to spending and were looking for good value, but local communities had become more supportive during the economic downturn in several areas.


January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

what they're saying is pumping ❛onLondon all cylinders, with new openings all the time and wellrun, long-standing businesses continuing to do well after the long recession. London will always be a Mecca for business, tourism and foreign investment, and this is so different from other parts of the country.

Patricia Michelson, La Fromagerie, London

Keelham Farm Shop saw an 8% year-on-year rise in Christmas sales

Ludovic Piot at Manchesterbased Épicerie Ludo said: “Even with the current economic climate, people are definitely supporting their local high streets. They are looking for alternatives to the big supermarkets.” High parking charges, a lack of government support for high streets and poor customer service from suppliers were bugbears among retailers, but the biggest concern was the threat posed by the supermarkets. “Trading will remain tough as the supermarkets try and encroach on our area of expertise,” said Candice Fonseca at Delifonseca in Liverpool. “It was frustrating to see the likes of Aldi producing fine food brochures full of items that are our bread and butter at Christmas. They had a Serrano ham, with stand and

This government is not going to ❛address the North/South imbalance – why should they? There are precious few votes for them here. There might be an increase in employment but it’s shortterm, part-time, minimum wage, zero- hours type of employment. That won’t encourage people to buy Montgomery Cheddar or Stichelton, but it will to shop at Aldi and Lidl.

Martyn Robinson, Arcimboldo’s, Harrogate

ever increasing competition ❛fromWithsupermarkets and the Liverpool’s Candice Fonseca: ‘Supermarkets are trying to encroach on our areas of expertise’

knife, at £45! Flooding the market with loss leaders is not good for the independents.”

High-end multiples doing well as middle-tier stores lose ground While fine food retailers enjoyed a positive end to 2013, the same could not be said of the mainstream supermarkets, with Morrisons and Tesco reporting drops in like-for-like sales of 5.6% and 2.4%, respectively, while Sainsbury’s sales were flat. High-end multiples fared much better. Booths announced its best ever Christmas results, with a sales increase of 6%. Waitrose’s like-forlike sales grew 3% and M&S Food sales increased by 4%. “Customers care about quality and provenance at Christmas – they want to know they are buying the best, they want something exceptional to serve, made by someone who cares about the food they produce,” said Booths chairman Edwin Booth.

internet, the way forward is in specialising in areas they can’t compete on. Any of the big boys can fill shelves with jars and bottles, very few can keep cheese in perfect condition and explain the difference between Keen’s and Westcombe. Iain Keith Smith, Chandos Deli, Bristol

Hearing good ❛news stories about house builders or other headline industries is different to seeing what the man or woman in the street feels. I do believe the economy has turned a corner but I think it will take time to see that filter down into our businesses. That said, if we can continue to show continuing improvements in sales and profitability in these harsher times, the future is looking pretty exciting.

Tom Newey, Country Food and Dining Follow us on


Anglesey Sea Salt joins PFN list as scheme picks up speed By PATRICK McGUIGAN

Defra plans to further boost the number of British foods with European protected food name (PFN) status this year by working more closely with regional food organisations, after three more products were approved this month. Anglesey Sea Salt, West Country Beef and West Country Lamb had their protected status confirmed by the EU at the beginning of January, taking the total number of PFNs in the UK to 62. Yorkshire Wensleydale was granted Protected Geographical

UK PFN applications currently being considered by the EC l l l l

Birmingham Balti Traditional Ayrshire Dunlop Traditional Bramley Apple Pie Filling Watercress

l Welsh Laverbread l West Wales Coracle Caught Salmon l West Wales Coracle Caught Sewin

Cornish produce supplier acquires Plough to Plate Produce supplier Westcountry Fruit Sales (WFS) has acquired Cornish fine food wholesaler Plough to Plate and plans to increase its product range. The Falmouth-based WFS, which supplies fruit and vegetable from more than 50 specialist growers across Cornwall, bought Plough to Plate in the week before Christmas. “Plough to Plate is a perfect fit with our existing businesses,” said Westcountry MD Sean Williams. “We plan to expand the speciality product range to provide customers with more ‘hard to

source’ ingredients, across the entire fresh, ambient and frozen categories of fine foods. “This is a hugely exciting deal for us and for the speciality food trade in the far South West. It opens up our wider markets to some amazing speciality food producers.” Started in 2001 by Nigel and Sherry Boocock, Plough to Plate supplies retailers and chefs in Devon and Cornwall with locally sourced products, including cheese, charcuterie, baked goods and condiments. www.ploughtoplate.co.uk

IN BRIEF l Ludlow’s Deli on the Square is Indication (PGI) status just before Christmas following an application from the Wensleydale Creamery in Hawes The Defra team responsible for administering and promoting the scheme told FFD that they hoped to take that tally to at least 65 by the end of 2014, while also encouraging a further 6-10 producers to start the application process. “One of our aims for this year is to visit the regions and talk to food groups, identifying products that would be eligible for protection,” said a spokesperson. “We also aim to do more to raise awareness with the public and producers, by engaging with media, attending food shows and building relationships with retailers.” Although no extra budget is available to promote the scheme, Defra’s PFN team will work more closely with UKTI as part of the government’s Export Action Plan for food and drink.

changing hands after long-time owner Maggie Wright sold the business in January. The new owner is Henry Mackley, previously the cheesemonger at the Ludlow Food Centre. Mackley purchased the deli in partnership with another investor but will run the business after it re-opens in the Spring following extensive refurbishment.

l High-end supermarket Booths has acquired fruit and veg wholesaler Sharrocks as the retailer looks to gain greater control over its supply chain and work more closely with farmers and growers.

l Dents of Hilgay farm shop in Norfolk has invested around £500,000 in a new restaurant and food hall. The project was partfinanced by a grant from the Rural Development Programme for England.

l One of Britain’s first farm shops has been given the go-ahead to rebuild after it was devastated by fire in 2010. Huddersfield-based Hinchcliffe's Farm Shop has been trading from temporary premises since the fire, but has now received full planning permission for a new shop and restaurant, which are due to open at the end of 2014. The shop was set up in the 1920s and is still headed by 90-year-old Charles Hinchcliffe, who took over the business from his father in the 1940s.

l Neal’s Yard Dairy and the Specialist Cheesemakers’ Association are holding a second Conference on the Science of Artisan Cheese on August 19-20 at North Cadbury Court in Somerset. The event will focus on themes relevant to the production of farmhouse cheese, such as the technical challenges facing small-scale producers and raw milk safety. www.nealsyarddairy.co.uk

CUMBRIAN CAMPAIGN: Herdwick sheep – a much-loved symbol of Cumbria, literally shaping the landscape as they roam free on the fells – are the focus of a new campaign designed to encourage retailers to stock lamb and mutton from the breed. Food group Taste Cumbria has teamed up with the Herdwick Sheep Breeders’ Association to promote Herdwick meat via a series of events, which have the backing of local MPs and funding from The Prince’s Countryside Fund. “We need to support the fragile network of specialist Herdwick farmers and shepherds who work as guardians of our unique Fells,” said Taste Cumbria’s manager Mary Houston.

l Pampered pooches can now be treated to gourmet foods including eclairs and doughnuts after the opening of a new delicatessen for dogs in Kimberley, Notts. Mrs Bishop’s Doggy Deli has been selling custom-made snacks and sweets for dogs online and at craft fairs since 2010, but now owners Paula and Alan Cassady-Bishop have opened their first high street shop. The deli sells baked treats made with ingredients such as ‘dog-safe’ chocolate and organic flour.

For regular news updates from FFD visit:

www.ffdonline.co.uk Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014


fine food news HEFF takes delivery of local foods in-house

Scotland targets London with artisan food drive The move is a ‘big deal for HEFF and our members’, says chief executive Karen Davies (pictured)


Regional food group Heart of England Fine Foods (HEFF) will now offer a full distribution service after taking the logistics side of its Delivery Service in-house. HEFF launched the service to its members in September 2012 and was previously running the operation with distributor Weddel Swift but it has now hired drivers and bought two branded vans to carry out deliveries. The West Midlands food group has also unveiled an online catalogue and ordering system, which works with both smart phones and tablets, and said it can now hold ambient goods in stock.

“Historically we’ve led the way on ‘one order, one delivery, one invoice’ approaches to selling regional food,” said HEFF chief executive Karen, “but the weakest point was always the physical part of the process, actually getting the produce to where it needed to be.” Food producers will receive their orders weekly from the HEFF Delivery Service and drop their products at one of seven regional hubs, including Birmingham, from where the dedicated vehicles will collect them for scheduled delivery runs to retailers and caterers. “Taking the logistics in-house is a big deal for us and for our members and we're all excited

If I'd known then what I know now...


January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

stephanie.pritchard@ scotlandfoodanddrink.org


I’d suggest visiting the site they are thinking of taking on and looking at the footfall. Who are your customers going to be and how can you expand the business in the future? We started doing adult cookery classes about three years ago. They take place every two weeks and last around three hours with a meal at the end. They were a slow burner but we stuck with it and they’re now really popular, which shows how long a business takes to get established.

Simon MacDonnell Papadeli, Bristol Retail on the high street is so hard. I would say to anyone starting off now that you can’t be a single-purpose shop. You need to go into business thinking about having various tentacles and how it’s going to grow. When we first set up 12 years ago, it was just a shop with a little bit of catering, but we were very lucky because we owned the building and were able to develop the other floors with a café and a cookery school. We’re a very different beast to what we were originally. We started with two employees and now have 18, including a head chef, pastry chef and catering manager. Another thing I would have done

about it,” added Davies. “Buyers from some of the biggest names in retail, including Selfridges, Costcutter and Nisa, appreciate this approach to accessing the products of our members, especially as they know that, to be a member, a food producer has to be fully accredited by us across all areas of their business, including for food safety.” HEFF first began offering a consolidated delivery service with AF Blakemore’s Heart Distribution division but the deal broke down and they parted company in 2011. Heart Distribution continues to trade and is still operating a ‘one order, one invoice, one delivery’ service.

Small food and drink companies from Scotland are aiming to increase sales to fine food retailers in London and the South East as part of a promotional programme that includes a ‘meet the buyer’ event in February. Scotland Food and Drink has identified the area as a key market for growth for Scottish artisan products with recently commissioned research showing that 27% of all UK fine food outlets are located in the region. The organisation is hosting a new producer showcase on February 6 in London as part of its Route to Market Programme, which has already seen producers attend a one-day workshop and two-day ‘learning journey’ on targeting the South East. More than 20 producers are confirmed for the meet-the-buyer event at the Cadogan Hotel in Knightsbridge. They will present their products to buyers from food halls, delis, farm shops and other independent retailers. Retailers interested in attending the event are asked to email Access to Markets manager Stephanie Pritchard for more details.

differently is to have more systems in place. Whether it’s effective ways of recording fridge temperatures, producing food or marketing, getting systems in place is really important for the future of the business and Whether it’s recording fridge its growth. They temperatures or marketing, getting need to be in place before you systems in place is really important start and then Things slowly snowball, but if adapt as you go along. you’re not enjoying it, don’t do it. You also need to do your We used to do children’s parties groundwork. When we first opened – cookery classes for 10-year-olds – we rode our luck a bit. We didn’t and it soon became clear you were really know what we were doing, but actually expected to be a children’s it was 2001 and the economy was entertainer. It would end up with cake booming. For people starting now,

being thrown around or someone bursting into tears. If we’d stuck with it, maybe it would have worked, with 20 parents in the café drinking coffee, but I didn’t have the patience. Staff training is very important and something we’re still grappling with. We have a huge number of different products and there’s no reason why someone working here on a gap year should know the difference between two different olive oils. We’ve started doing tastings with staff in the evenings and run a training programme outlining what we expect of staff when a customer walks in. You need a five-year plan and some kind of endgame when you set up your own business. Think about why you are doing it and what you want. When you are employed, the employer maps out your career progression, but when you work for yourself you need your own goals. Interview by PATRICK McGUIGAN

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Kent’s Kitchen gravies and stockpots make winter cooking easier and tastier. The gravies include beef, lamb & mint, chicken and onion and create a thick, glossy gravy to enhance your meal. Easy to make and stored in the cupboard before and after opening.

Visit www.kentskitchen.co.uk, email emma@kentskitchen.co.uk or call 07966 888240


C Sa ots w m Ke w old nt ays Fa ’s ra Kit sto yre ng ch ck & es en al . ’s l

The stockpots include beef, chicken, fish and vegetable and add a great taste to home made dishes. Just pop into soups, stews and casseroles to add real flavour.


Take a look atTa the new products and special offers in our

January Supplement Available to download at www.bespoke-foods.co.uk

Discover the new ranges and products from Bespoke Foods this year For more information, get in touch: Phone: 020 7091 3200 Fax: 020 7091 3300 8

January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

Email: sales@bespoke-foods.co.uk

Web: www.bespoke-foods.co.uk

fine food news new openings

Opening or expanding a shop? Email details to editorial@finefoodworld.co.uk

Cranstons hits six with £1m Carlisle food hall

At a glance l Local producers supplying the food hall include Mr Vikki’s, Claire’s Handmade, Brysons Bakery, Taste of Eden Ice Cream, Saunders Chocolates and Appleby Creamery.

l Cranstons was established in 1914 by the current directors’ great uncle, Stanley Cranston. Today it operates a flagship food hall in Penrith, the new food hall at Orton Grange and four traditional butcher’s shops. In also sells fresh meat and delicatessen produce to restaurants and hotels.

l Peter Potts (pictured left), who has worked for Cranstons for 20 years, will manage the new food hall. “I would be lying if I said there had been no sleepless nights,” he said, “but on the whole it has been a fantastic challenge.”

Orton Grange is Cranstons’ second food hall and sixth outlet in total

Cumbria-based local food specialist Cranstons has expanded its retail estate to six shops after opening a £1m food hall close to Carlisle. The new shop is situated at Orton Grange, a 400-acre farm that has diversified over the years to include a gift shop, café, hairdressers, beauty salon and private hire swimming pool. It stocks products from more than 30 Cumbrian producers and, like the company’s flagship food hall

in Penrith, centres around a large 6m butchery counter. There is also a 7m deli counter, a large selection of fresh fruit and vegetables, more than 50 wines, and ales from three local breweries. Harry Tiffin, a 90-something former farmer who worked at the farm from 1957 until his retirement, cut a ‘ribbon’ of sausages to officially open the food hall with more than 2,000 people passing through its doors on the first day of trading.


Caracoli Farnham, Hants


Reigate, Surrey Cullenders has moved to larger premises in Reigate. The new 1,000 sq ft shop houses a café with 30 covers, an extensive cheese counter and olive bar and expanded range of ambient deli products. It replaces two smaller shops in Reigate and Redhill although the latter continues to trade under new owners and is now called Deli on the Hill. “It was a natural progression to have a café,” said Joelle Cullender, who runs the business with husband Marc. “It was our original dream, but when we started we played it safe with small shops and small rents.” www.cullenders.com

This is Hampshire-based coffee shop and food store Caracoli’s fourth outlet. The shop stocks products from its own Caracoli Kitchen range, such as cakes, cookies and cereals, which are made in a central kitchen near Winchester and have been recognised in the Great Taste awards. It also specialises in Italian

Cranstons MD Philip Cranston said: “Our existing food hall in Penrith has shown that there is still a massive public appetite for local food when it is delivered in an affordable and convenient format. We hope that the Orton Grange Food Hall, just off the busy A595 commuter road, with ample free parking and a café on site, will become a real destination for locals and visitors alike.’’ Orton Grange is a working dairy farm run by Richard Martin, whose

family have farmed there since the 1950s. His sister Claire Scott, who owns the café and gift shop, said: “It is almost 10 years since my brother Richard and I first converted one of the redundant barns on the farm. The place was an instant success, so much so that we extended the initial development after only two years. It is wonderful to now have Cranstons on board and we hope our loyal and supportive customer base will enjoy their great selection of local produce’’ www.cranstons.net

Chococo products from suppliers including Vallebona, Guidetti and Seggiano. The café serves a range of different coffee, prepared by trained baristas, alongside homemade cakes, light lunches and takeaway sandwiches. Caracoli’s other outlets are in Alresford, Winchester and Guildford. www.caracoli.co.uk

Winchester, Hants This shop, which features a café serving pure origin hot chocolates, joins the chocolatier’s first outlet in Swanage, Dorset, and has a colourful interior to reflect the packaging of its handmade chocolates.These are made with Dorset cream and locally sourced ingredients. Products include beer-flavoured chocolate, made with Old Thumper ale from Hampshire’s Ringwood Brewery, and Black Cow – a milk chocolate ganache infused with Black Cow Vodka from Dorset. There is also a newly launched chocolate made with Dorset Blue Vinny cheese. www.chococo.co.uk

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014





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January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

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fine food news Garden centre growth for Brown and Green

Guild members offered two-week window to enter at 2013 prices, as entries are limited to 10,000 to ‘maintain integrity of the scheme’

Great Taste entries capped for 2014 as interest soars


The judging was strengthened again last year. ‘It’s important we don’t compromise that,’ says Guild MD John Farrand

After four years of double-digit growth, entries to the Great Taste awards scheme are to be capped at 10,000 this year “to maintain the integrity of the scheme”. The Guild of Fine Food is also limiting online entries to 30 products per company, and has restructured entry prices to ensure larger producers and supermarket own-brand manufacturers pay more. Entry costs for Guild members will be held at 2013 levels provided they enter online during a special Members’ Fortnight slot from February 10-23, before general entries open on February 24. Guild MD and FFD associate publisher John Farrand said: “It’s 20 years since we launched Great Taste with 246 entries, and it grew slowly and steadily until about four years ago. “Then awareness among consumers and the media seemed to reach a tipping point. Producers really latched on to the value of those Great Taste stars on-pack, and supermarkets began pushing their own-label suppliers to enter. “We went from just under 5,000 entries in 2009 to 9,700 last year.” More than 400 retailers, chefs, Follow us on


food writers and other experts took part in Great Taste judging in 2013, mostly at the Guild’s new purposebuilt facility in Dorset. The number of products tasted rose by 25% compared with 2012 but the number of awards went up by just 18%. Only 125 products received the maximum three stars – just two more than in 2012. Farrand said: “We beefed up the judging process again last year, and it’s important we don’t compromise that by accepting more and more entries. We’ve also put a cap on entries from individual producers so they’re more selective about what they enter, because Great Taste is not just another a mainstream grocery awards scheme.” While some producers and retailers believe supermarket products should be excluded from Great Taste, Farrand said highly-processed, massmarket products rarely figured among the winners. “A high proportion of ‘supermarket’ products that get more than one star are either Protected Food Name products or primary products, like the Aldi Kilkree Gold organic honey that made last year’s Top 50 Foods.”

He added: “The number of Great Taste products on sale in any deli or farm shop will far outstrip the number in any supermarket.” Guild members who enter online during Members’ Fortnight will pay £31 plus VAT per entry (or £41 for companies with annual turnover above £1million). From February 24, all entrants will pay £45/£75 (depending on turnover). The entry cost for all supermarket own label products will be £150.

Farm shop Brown and Green has opened its fourth store with the Blue Diamond garden centre chain and plans to open other outlets with the company in the future. The new 1,500 sq ft store is part of Blue Diamond’s new Redfields Home of Garden & Living store near Fleet in Hampshire, and will double in size in the summer with a second phase of construction. Brown and Green owners Susie and Euan Keenan have three other farm shops in Blue Diamond outlets in Derby, Staffordshire and Gloucestershire. The garden centre chain has 15 branches in total. Susie Keenan told FFD: “We plan to work closely with Blue Diamond on other opportunities as they present themselves. We’re always excited by MD Alan Roper’s vision and are proud to be a part of its future. We’re cautious not to grow too fast – at present we are not keeping up with Blue Diamond’s own development and expansion – but we certainly expect to have more stores in Blue Diamond centres in the future.” She said that the business was now enjoying better buying power with suppliers, which included securing bespoke promotions, and was able to manage stock effectively by moving products from store to store. “Our main challenges are the growing number of suppliers to manage, as many are unique to each store,” she said. “Having four stores with a fair geographical spread ultimately means less time in each store for Euan and I, who constitute the ‘head office’.” Keenan said that like-for-like sales across the group increased by 10% in 2013 with all stores showing growth.


GREAT TASTE 2014 TIMELINE • February 10-23 – Guild Members’ Fortnight (GFF members can enter online at a discounted rate) • February 24-March 21 – general entries open • May-June – main awards judging • July 16 – three-star judging • Late July/early August – 1-, 2- and 3-star winners named • September 8 – Great Taste awards dinner

Redfields is Brown and Green’s fourth Blue Diamond tie-up Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014


• Family company established 1977 • BRC certified at the highest level • Over 1000 products • Specialists in quality cooked meats and continental charcuterie • Full range of British and continental cheeses also supplied • Vast selection for the deli counter and retail packs for the chilled cabinet • FREE delivery anywhere in England & Wales (Ts & Cs apply) 12

January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1


01582 590999 www.westphalia.co.uk

fine food news Interview

With less than six months until the first phase of Westmorland’s £40m Gloucester Services opens on the M5, MICHAEL LANE speaks to farm shop buyer Alexander Evans about his quest for local suppliers

On the road again

Evans says the farm shops at Gloucester Services will have to "hit the ground running".

Bristol and Gloucester “quietly, as a shopper”. There were also a series of five ‘meet the buyer’ events held across the region during the first two weeks of November. With 160 suppliers attending, Evans says it took until Christmas to digest the information gathered at these “hugely successful” events. He currently has 2,000 lines in the Tebay farm shops from 130-odd suppliers but is aiming to source closer to 1,500 lines for Gloucester. There are also local supplier quotas stipulated under planning conditions and by Gloucestershire Gateway Trust, but Evans has comfortably exceeded the target of 60 producers and is already considering around 100 suppliers within a 30-mile radius of the site. “It’s a happy headache,” he says. “When we started at Tebay, I think we had about a dozen.”

While Evans is still struggling for a “remarkable” pork pie producer and plans to bring certain Cumbrian delicacies, such as Cartmel sticky toffee pudding, along with him, he doesn’t see too many categories that Gloucestershire and its neighbours cannot fill. Fruit and veg is “one of our weaknesses” in Tebay but will be a strength in Gloucestershire, he says, and he is planning a 3-metre display of local apple juices. Having enjoyed success since a full licence was granted to Tebay last Easter, Gloucester will also capitalise on the wealth of beer and cider in the region. Then there’s cheese. Tebay’s northbound shop sold 5,000kg in 2013 and Evans expects it to be a strong suit for Gloucester, except it will be West Country Farmhouse Cheddars and goats’ milk cheeses rather than crumbly Lancashire and

Stuart Key Photography


ot many food buyers grace the pages of Fine Food Digest wearing high-vis and a hard hat but Alexander Evans has donned this kit before. The scenario he finds himself in is similar to when he was hired by Westmorland in October 2002 for a new project at the acclaimed Tebay Services in Cumbria. “They had ordered two log cabins from Norway and needed someone to turn them into farm shops,” he says, recalling the remit given to him by Westmorland’s owners, the Dunning family, who first set up the service area 40 years ago when the M6 was built through their farmland. With the benefit of 17 years at Harrods’ food halls, Evans oversaw the creation of two shops that now boast annual sales in the region of £1.5m each. Westmorland is hoping to replicate the success of Tebay with a new site between junctions 11a and 12 on the M5, dubbed Gloucester Services, and Evans has again been charged with kitting out two more shops. But this is a very different undertaking. The £40m project, set up in partnership with the Gloucestershire Gateway Trust charity, is in a busier area of the motorway network both in terms of footfall and competition. There are expectations this time round and Evans is fully aware that when the northbound side opens this June – complete with full deli, cheese and butchery counters as well a fresh produce section – that it has “got to hit the ground running”. “The big thing about Gloucester is it won’t be our farm,” he says, referring in particular to replacing the Dunning’s own beef, lamb and other livestock. “So we’re just taking the principles of what we do at Tebay: being of the area and reflecting that area to people whizzing by on the motorway.” That means a strong local sourcing agenda and, because of Evans’ distaste for the catalogue-led “garden centre approach”, dealing direct with the majority of producers. Potential suppliers will be pleased to hear that Evans doesn’t want to “beat people down on price”, nor does he have to. “There are higher costs within motorway services but our base margin is around 36%,” he says. “I know our prices are less than Chatsworth and House of Bruar. We don’t put on a premium just because we’re on the motorway. We’re operating on a margin like any other upmarket deli.” Evans has been afforded some time for his search due to a lengthy planning process, which included objections from motorway service operators running nearby sites. He has spent the last two years perusing farmers’ markets in Stroud,

Isle of Mull cheddar. Passing tourists, he says, don’t just want local products, but something related to the region where they have been holidaying. Isle of Mull is popular with those heading south from Scotland and Tebay’s southbound farm shop sells twice as much smoked salmon as its sister store. Evans expects products from Somerset, Devon and Cornwall to play an important part in his retail mix, especially in the northbound shop. That said, there is still some uncertainty about customer profiles, especially the volume of commuters on the M5 who might require different things. “You start with a palette of products but the customers will let you know,” concludes Evans philosophically. www.westmorland.com/gloucesterservices

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014




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January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

cheesewire Unsung heroes Hidden gems from British producers

news & views from the cheese counter

La Cave plans more stores after Notting Hill opening By PATRICK McGUIGAN

Laverstoke Park Creamy Blue Cheese

In a nutshell: Laverstoke Park has received widespread acclaim for its buffalo mozzarella but the company’s Creamy Blue cheese is also a winner. Made by head cheese-maker Margaretha Herman using pasteurised buffalo milk, it comes in 750g foil-wrapped half wheels and 180g wedges. Flavour and texture: The cheese has a soft, creamy texture from the buffalo milk, which balances out the tanginess of the blue for a smooth, rounded flavour. History: Laverstoke Park is a 2,500-acre organic and biodynamic farm in Hampshire run by former F1 world champion Jody Scheckter. He set up the business in 1996 and today has a herd of around 2,500 Asian water buffalo whose milk is used to make mozzarella, burrata, ricotta and other dairy products. Cheese Care: Whole cheeses have a shelf life of 16-20 weeks. When cut, the cheese has a threeweek shelf life. Why should I stock it: There’s been a surge of interest in blue buffalo milk cheeses since Blu di Bufala, from Caseifico Quattro Portoni in Italy, took second place at the 2012 World Cheese Awards. Perfect partners: Ideal with a sweet sparkling wine like Moscato d’Asti or a rich, chocolaty porter, Creamy Blue is also a great cooking cheese. Where to buy: Several wholesalers list the cheese, including Abbey Cheese, Trencherman’s and The Cheese Man. FFD features a different ‘unsung hero’ from Specialist Cheesemakers’ Association members each month. To get involved, contact: patrick.mcguigan@finefoodworld.co.uk

Cheesemonger and affineur La Cave à Fromage has opened its third store and plans to open two more outlets in the capital next year. Located on Portobello Road in Notting Hill, the new shop sells around 250 cheeses sourced directly from cheese-makers in the UK, France, Italy and Spain, and features a selection of cheeses matured at the company’s headquarters in Bucks. It also houses a 30-seater café, which serves platters of cheese, British charcuterie and locally baked baguettes. La Cave, which is a sister company to cheese wholesaler Premier, also has shops in Brighton and Kensington. Amnon Paldi, who owns the business with Eric Charriaux, told FFD that he was in advanced negotiations for two further sites in London. “Finding the right location and the right space for our shops has taken quite a long time, but we

La Cave à Fromage’s third shop has opened on Portobello Road in west London, selling around 250 varieties

are really pleased with the Notting Hill store,” he said. “It’s in the right catchment area and there is lots of passing trade, so we can hit the ground running. The shop has huge windows, which is critical to our shops, so people can get a clear view of what we sell and what we do.”

Cheese-makers mourn loss of Yellison Farm founder By PATRICK McGUIGAN

Tributes have been paid to Stephen Akrigg, founder of Yorkshire-based Yellison Farm Goats’ Cheese, who died on Christmas Day after a serious illness. Akrigg, who was 65 when he died, established Yellison 10 years ago near Skipton and was a popular and well-known figure in Yorkshire's fine food sector. Fellow cheese-maker Iona Hill, owner of Ribblesdale Cheese, knew Akrigg well and told FFD that he was a gracious and generous man. “He was extremely personable and a great sales person with an amazing knack for PR, though he would deny it,” she said. “He was the face of the Yorkshire Show in 2012. His picture showed him smiling, with his glasses half way down his nose cuddling one of his beautiful goats. Steve really did love his goats.” Great Yorkshire Show director Bill Cowling said: “Stephen was a marvellous enthusiast for regional food and for goats’ cheese in particular. This was very evident in his substantial contribution to our 2012 Great Yorkshire Show video where his hard work and passion for the farming industry captivated the thousands of people who followed his story. Our thoughts are with his family.”

Yellison Farm was put up for sale before Christmas, valued at £60,000, including the brand, a 138-strong herd of goats and all of the company's milking, cheese-making and refrigeration equipment. Akrigg's son Jonathan has been running the company since his father fell ill. A local couple, who are new to cheese-making, were close to buying the business as FFD went to press. www.yellisonfarmgoatscheese.co.uk

Stephen Akrigg set up goats’ cheese production at Yellison Farm a decade ago

La Cave was forced to cancel its annual Cheese Makers Market in Beaconsfield in December after it was “let down by an equipment supplier”, said Paldi, who added that the spring market would still go ahead in April. www.la-cave.co.uk

Organic cheese event set up to boost sales The Soil Association hopes to arrest a decline in sales of organic cheese with a showcase event in March, which will connect cheese-makers with retail buyers. Organic dairy was one of the star performers in 2013, according to Nielsen data for the 52 weeks to October 12 2013. Sales of organic milk and yoghurt rose 3.4% and 6.7%, respectively, but organic cheese failed to keep pace as sales declined by 2.3%. The Soil Association hopes to turn around sales by providing a platform for organic cheese producers to offer samples to visiting retailers, foodservice operators and journalists. The association has also teamed up with the Specialist Cheesemakers Association to offer existing and aspiring cheese-makers a bursary of £1,000 to support their professional development. The Dougal Campbell Cheese Bursary is named after the founder of Welsh Organic Foods, the first specialist organic cheese-making company in Britain. The closing date for applications is Friday February 14 and the winner will be announced at the Organic Cheese Showcase on March 6 at Winkworth Farm, Malmesbury, Wiltshire. www.soilassociation.org

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014


Celebrating 25 years-

Great tasting British Stilton made the traditional way

The Taste of Dedication

Cropwell Bishop is famous for its cheese, and we have been producing delicious Stilton for three generations from our village creamery. We handcraft our cheese the traditional way, using milk from carefully selected regional farms.

Handmade exclusively from the milk produced by the ewes here on our farm. Available throughout the UK, also; North America, Europe and Asia. Our accolades: Super Gold 2013 World Cheese Awards. Best

Modern British Cheese and Best Export Cheese at the British Cheese Awards. The Jame Aldridge Memorial Trophy. Excellence in Practical Farming; The Royal Agricultural Society of England.

Find out more about our range of cheese, and what makes it so tasty, at www.cropwellbishopstilton.co.uk Call us on 0115 989 2350 or follow us on twitter @YummyStilton


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Available now from all good Wholesalers



January-February 2014 路 Vol.15 Issue 1


Art and science Interview

Some purists say there’s no place for boffins in the traditional dairy. But ex-microbiologist Anne Wigmore tells PATRICK McGUIGAN that, even for artisan makers like Village Maid, science is crucial to consistently great cheese.


wo years ago, Neal’s Yard Dairy and the Specialist Cheesemakers Association teamed up to stage a conference on the science of artisan cheesemaking, with another planned for this August. The move was prompted partly by a feeling that some producers were ambivalent, if not downright suspicious, of the role of science in the artisan dairy. As Neal’s Yard’s Bronwen Percival told me: “For many, using ‘science’ is analogous to ‘becoming industrial’.” Anne Wigmore, who runs Village Maid Cheese with her husband Andy, certainly isn’t one of those cheese-makers. She trained as a microbiologist and worked at the National Institute for Research in Dairying (NIRD), a governmentfunded facility that would help cheese-makers solve technical challenges free of charge. But it was closed in 1985. “There is definitely a lack of technical understanding today, partly because places like NIRD have closed down,” says Wigmore, who went to the 2012 conference. “Understanding science is crucial. Making cheese is not like baking a cake, where you use the same amounts of flour, sugar and fat. Milk is a live product that’s constantly changing. Unless you know what to do when something changes, I can’t see how people can make cheese to the best it can be.” Set up in 1986 in a converted shed in her back garden near Reading, Village Maid was meant to be “a little job on the side” to fit in around having a family, says Wigmore, but demand quickly grew with the renaissance in British cheese. Inspiration for her first product, Spenwood, a hard ewes’ milk cheese, came from an epic sailing holiday, which took in Sardinia and lots of pecorino Sardo. Other cheeses came and went, such as

Village Maid has stuck firmly to its established range of three cheeses

Anne and Andy Wigmore have extended their dairy to give more maturing and packaging space

the smoked ewes’ milk Rook’s Nest made alongside affineur James Aldridge, but Waterloo, a creamy semi-soft Guernsey milk cheese, and the soft sheep’s milk cheese Wigmore have stood the test of time along with Spenwood. Now based in the village of Riseley, Village Maid has just undergone a £110,000 extension, part-funded by a Rural Development Programme for England grant. The changes include a larger maturing room and a wrapping and packaging room, all of which will help the company meet demand and balance out production. Around 1,300 cheeses are currently made each week, with Wigmore and Waterloo taking up the bulk of production. Spenwood, which is aged for six months, has been in short supply because of a lack of maturation space. Only 70-80 of the 2kg cheeses are made each week, with no production at all between October and December when the company needs all the sheep’s milk it can get to meet Christmas orders for Wigmore. “It means we have a gap in supply come April and May, but with the new extension we’ve got more storage space, so can make more Spenwood during the summer before the Christmas rush, which we can then mature a little longer

to cover the following spring,” explains Wigmore. Meeting demand last year was particularly difficult because of a shortage of sheep’s milk, she adds, with suppliers encountering problems with the sheep ‘drying off’ early. “There aren’t that many sheep farms milking at the scale we want and we’ve seen prices rise by 5-10p a year recently to reach £1.23 a litre,” she says. “But there are more people setting up, so that will make a difference going forward.” One potential supplier is also experimenting with Dorset

cheese isn’t ❛likeMaking baking a cake. Milk is a live product that’s constantly changing.

Poll sheep, which lamb early and can cover dips in supply from other farms. Wigmore also likes to experiment, “messing about in the dairy” with different batches, just like she did back in her NIRD days, but there are no new products planned just yet. “We can’t produce enough of what we make already so it would be crazy to launch a new cheese,” she tells FFD. The company has, however, started making special 1.2kg wheels of Wigmore for Neal’s Yard, which are washed to make a new variety called Riseley. Maintaining and improving the standards of the three cheeses she has made for more than 20 years remains the focus, says Wigmore, and it can only be achieved by being methodical – something that comes naturally to a scientist. Each day’s make is logged with details on time, temperature, acidity and brining durations, with any unusual characteristics in the milk or the finished cheese noted at the top of the page. “We used to think our cheeses were good, but when we look back at records from 10-12 years old we can see how much the cheese has improved because we’re continually tweaking things.” www.villagemaidcheese.co.uk

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014



January-February 2014 路 Vol.15 Issue 1

world cheese awards


German blue beats itself to top prize This year saw Germany take both top spot and second place with the same cheese. We round up all of the winners in this three-page report.

Another double in the Big Cheese Challenge


t may have been held at the same time and in the same place as previous years but the 2013 World Cheese Awards produced a number of firsts in the history of the 25-yearold event. Germany took its inaugural bow as World Champion, taking the crown from last year’s first ever champion for Spain, with a creamy blue cheese from Bavaria. But Montagnolo Affiné, produced by Kaserei Champignon and distributed in the UK by Elite Imports Ltd, didn’t just claim top spot. It was also named the Reserve Champion, finishing just a single point behind its winning counterpart after the supreme judging panel’s scores had been totted up. Unknown to the judges, Montagnolo Affiné, which was named Supreme Champion at the Nantwich International Cheese Show in 2012, was entered into both the blue cheese section and a newly created category for cheeses that have already won major international competitions. Both cheeses progressed through the morning judging session, held at the BBC Good Food Show in Birmingham’s NEC on 27 November, and made the list of 58 SuperGold awards.

In the afternoon, a supreme judging panel selected 15 cheeses from this list to go through to the final judging. A Le Gruyère AOP Premier Cru, from Cremo SA Von Muhlenen, was very close in third place, just one point behind the German cheese. The top 15 line-up also included Stiltons from Colston Bassett and Cropwell Bishop and Cerney Cheese’s goats’ milk Cerney Pyramid. The UK was well-represented in the SuperGold list with the soft, raw cows’ milk St Jude from White Wood Dairy, Long Clawson Dairy’s Claxstone Smooth Blue and First Milk’s white

North Yorkshire’s Andy Swinscoe secured his place among the UK’s best speciality retailers by winning the Le Gruyére AOP Cheesemonger of the Year competition in front of a consumer audience at Birmingham’s NEC on the day after the World Cheese Awards judging. The day before his triumph, Swinscoe (pictured) had already picked up the Best Cheese Counter title for his shop The Courtyard Dairy in Settle, Yorkshire. Swinscoe took on four other top cheesemongers in a series of rounds covering cheese cutting, wrapping, pairing with wine or beer and general cheese knowledge. Jenny Pettitt of London’s Cheddar Deli and Toby Archer of the Cheese Plate in Hertfordshire, were joint runners-up. Both the Cheesemonger of the Year and Cheese Counter of the Year competitions are part of the Big Cheese Challenge sponsored by Le Gruyère AOP.

extra mature cheddar all making the cut. Golden Cross Cheese’s soft, sheeps’ milk Flower Marie was also among the SuperGolds as were two cheeses from Two Hoots: Barkham Blue and Baby Barkham. Two English hard sheep’s milk cheeses – Spenwood from Village Maid Dairy and Berkswell from Ram Hall – were also in the Top 58, rubbing shoulders with the likes of last year’s champion Manchego Gran Reserva made by Dehesa de Los Llanos. Spain, Switzerland and the USA all had multiple SuperGold cheeses. In total, the 2,777 entries under scrutiny at the NEC yielded nearly 700 bronze, silver and gold medal-winners from a variety of countries.

www.facebook.com/ BestCheeseCounter


SUPER GOLDS – the world’s best cheeses

Le Gruyère AOP, Gold Label, extra würzig Affinéur Walo von Mühlenen, Switzerland www.affineurwalo.ch

Gruyère Premier Cru Cremo SA - von Mühlenen, Switzerland www.vonmuhlenen.ch

Beemster, aged 10 months CONO Kaasmakers, Netherlands www.beemsterkaas.nl

Cerney Pyramid Cerney Cheese, UK

Cave Aged Marisa Carr Valley Cheese Co, USA



Ländle Klostertaler Vorarlberg Milch eGen, Austria

Cerrado do Vale Amanteigado Santiago & Santiago, Portugal



Urnaesch mountain cheese Urnaescher Milchspezialitaeten, Aged Iberico Cheese Switzerland Lacteas Garcia Baquero, Spain www.urnaescherkaese.ch St.Jude White Wood Dairy, UK www.whitewooddairy.co.uk

Taupinette Jousseaume Jousseaume Earl, France


El Bosqueño Oveja Grazalemeña Emborrado En Aceite De Oliva Quesos El Bosqueño, Spain www.quesoselbosque.com

Der Scharffe Maxx 365 Emmi UK, Switzerland Winzer Kase Emmi UK, Switzerland

Torta Hacienda Zorita The Haciendas Company, Spain www.the-haciendas.com

Queso Manchego Dehesa de Los Llanos - Gran Reserva Dehesa de Los Llanos, Spain www.dehesadelosllanos.es

Cancho Roano Queseria Tierra De Barros, Spain

Grindelwalder Bergkäse Jäckle Frische-Partner, Germany

Roccolo Heiderbeck Käse vom Feinsten, Germany




Crisembert Formatges Camps, Spain www.formatgescamps.com


Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014



world cheese awards

Top stuff Here are the rest of the major trophy winners from the 2013 awards

Interprofession du Gruyère Trophy for Best Le Gruyère AOP Gruyère Premier Cru Cremo SA - von Mühlenen

The Artisan Cheese Exchange Trophy for Best USA Cheese Chevre Up in Smoke Rivers Edge Chevre



goodcheese Good Cheese Trophy for Best British Cheese Blue Stilton Colston Bassett Dairy www.colstonbassettdairy.co.uk

Felix Garcia Memorial Trophy for Best Canary Island Cheese Pastor Isleño curado Pimentón Grupo Ganaderos De Fuerteventura

Kosí Vršok Trophy for Best

Exceptional Contribution to Cheese: Eurwen Richards This year’s winner of the Exceptional Contribution to Cheese has had a long and esteemed career. Eurwen Richards began her cheese journey as a lab technician after graduating from Aberystwyth University, from which she also later gained an MSc. This was followed by 11 years as a food technologist with Marks & Spencer and a decade as a quality assurance manager at Dairy Crest. Seeking a little independence, she then struck out as a self-employed consultant helping cheese producers in less obvious cheese-making countries. Her work has taken her to cheese-makers in countries as diverse as Kenya, Russia, Madagascar, Cyprus and India. Aside from her role as a global cheese diplomat, Richards is also a stalwart of the judging circuit. She won the British Cheese Board’s Lifetime Achievement award in 2001 and was named British Cheese Person of the Year in 2007 while 2012 saw the Royal Welsh Agricultural Society create her own special award for the best Welsh cheese at the Royal Welsh Show, which she judges personally. Richards is just as dedicated to her volunteer work with Churches Together in Wales, particularly as a street pastor in her hometown of Bridgend, where she has assisted worse-for-wear Saturday night revellers for the last five years. Guild of Fine Food MD John Farrand said: “The simplest way to sum up what is, genuinely, a lifetime contribution to cheese-making and retailing is to tell you that she has never missed a World Cheese Awards in its 25-year history. “We cannot calculate how many cheese lives she has touched in a constructive and positive way.”


Fine Food Digest Trophy for Best Australian Cheese Bellingham Blue Berrys Creek Gourmet Cheese www.berryscreekcheese.com

Best French Cheese St Mont des Alpes Monts & Terroirs – Entremont Renard Gillard

Central & Eastern European Cheese Dinarski sir Sirana Gligora

John Webb Trophy for World’s Best Unpasteurised Cheese Gruyère Premier Cru Cremo SA - von Mühlenen



Barber’s 1833 Trophy for Best New Cheese Grand Noir Kaserei Champignon / Elite Imports

Best Spanish Cheese Cancho Roano Queseria Tierra De Barros



Food & Drink Wales Trophy for Best Welsh Cheese Extra Mature Cheddar Creamery – Sweeter Flavour No 1 Arla Foods Llandyrnog Creamery www.arlafoods.co.uk


Best Irish Cheese Yeats Country Mascarpone Green Pastures (Donegal)

Best Italian Cheese Caciocavallo Stagionato in Cantina di Pietra Caseificio Di Nucci



SUPER GOLDS – the world’s best cheeses St Mont des Alpes Monts &Terroirs Entremont Renard Gillard, France

Gruyère Premier Cru Cremo SA - von Mühlenen, Switzerland

Queso De Oveja Semicurado Jamesa Queserias Romero Gozalbez, Spain



Vaca, sin prensar Quesos Gomber, Spain

Cropwell Bishop Blue Stilton Cropwell Bishop Creamery, UK

Catí Pell Florida De Cabra Quesos De Catí, Spain www.quesosdecati.com

Kaltbach Le Gruyère D2 Emmi UK, Switzerland 20


Fat Bottom Girl Bleating Heart Cheese, USA www.bleatingheart.com

January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

Gorgonzola DOP Selezione Carozzi Carozzi Formaggi, Italy www.carozzi.com

White Extra Mature Cheddar First Milk Limited, UK Blue Stilton Colston Bassett Dairy, UK www.colstonbassettdairy.co.uk

Pata de Mulo Curado Los Payuelos Quesería Artesanal Los Payuelos, Spain Montagnolo Affiné Elite Imports Limited, Germany www.elite-imports-limited.co.uk

Le Gruyère AOP, Gold Label, extra würzig Affinéur Walo von Mühlenen, Switzerland

Tania, Lenberg Farms Classic Reserve, Toscano Sheep’s Milk Cheese Finica Food Specialties, Canada



Berkswell Ram Hall Dairy Sheep, UK

Finest Chaource AOP QST / Cheese de France, France


Baby Barkham Two Hoots Cheese, UK www.twohootscheese.co.uk

Claxstone Smooth Blue Long Clawson Dairy, UK www.clawson.co.uk

From Waitrose Chaource AOP QST / Cheese de France, France Stärnächäs extra tasty, extra würzig Affinéur Walo von Mühlenen, Switzerland www.affineurwalo.ch

World Cheese Awards Rivers Edge Chevre Up in Smoke 2013 Best American Cheese

Award-winning cheese from Austria

National and International Award winning Farmstead Cheese ~ the fruit of our farm to your table in the form of luscious, delicious, beautiful cheese.

Made by hand with untreated hay milk in small mountain dairies above 800 m sea level.


Rivers Edge Chevre, The Little Goat Dairy By The River, 6315 Logsden Rd. Logsden, OR 97357, USA threering@peak.org www.riversedgechevre.com /riversedge.chevre


ALM_anz_WCA_100x141mm.indd 1

08.01.14 10:00

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014



world cheese awards Winners cross all styles and nationalities Foodservice and manufacturing ingredient supplier The Cheese Warehouse has won gold and silver awards this year for its Provolone Piccante and natural oak smoked cheddar respectively. All of the firm’s smoked cheeses are slowly, naturally smoked over hickory, oak or cherry wood chips to add an extra layer of flavour. As they are all natural, not extruded, cheeses can be supplied in grated, diced or shaved formats as required. www.thecheesewarehouse.co.uk

Not only did Cerney Cheese win a Supergold award for its Cerney Pyramid but the Valençay-style soft goats’ cheese also made the final 15 selected by the supreme judging panel to compete for the World Champion trophy. The cheese, described as “creamy with a lemony tang”, is made from unpasteurised goats’ milk and then hand-coated in sea salt and oak ash. Each 250g cheese has an RRP of £6-8.

Quickes Vintage Cheddar is made by hand and matured for two years resulting in a “full, mellow flavour” and the butteryness that characterises all of the cheese produced on the family farm in Devon. This year it took a gold at the World Cheese Awards and also made the Great Taste Top 50 list. Quickes’ younger extra mature cheddar (18 months) and its oaksmoked cheddar (1 year old) claimed bronze and silver respectively. These cheddars are available in packed deli cuts and whole pre-packs (shelf life 90 days) and have an RRP of £24-30/kg. www.quickes.co.uk



Kozí Vršok (“Goat Hill”) is a traditional aged cheese brand from mountainous Central Slovakia. Its semi-hard goats’ cheese, which won a bronze this year, is made using bio milk that imparts a distinctive spiciness to the end product. The producer, which is currently seeking UK dsictributors, sells the cheese in 1-2kg wholes as well as pre-packs of 150g. Whole cheeses have a trade price of £30.50/kg while pre-packs cost £33.50/kg. The RRP is £46/kg. www.kozivrsok.sk

SUPER GOLDS – the world’s best cheeses Le Reflet de Portneuf Saputo Dairy Products, Canada www.saputo.ca

Castello Black Arla Foods, Denmark Dinarski sir Sirana Gligora, Croatia www.gligora.com

Grand Noir Elite Imports Limited, Germany www.elite-imports-limited.co.uk

El Bosqueño Cabra Payoya Al Pimenton Quesos El Bosqueño Spain

Yeats Country Mascarpone Green Pastures (Donegal), Ireland www.greenpasturesdonegal.com

Ovicaprino Fontana Noa C Carnevale, Italy www.carnevale.co.uk

Bloomsdale Baetje Farms, USA www.baetjefarms.com



January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

Sartori Reserve Cinnamon Rubbed BellaVitano Sartori Company, USA www.sartoricheese.com

Billy Blue Carr Valley Cheese Co, USA www.carrvalleycheese.com

Rivers Edge Chevre Up in Smoke Rivers Edge Chevre, USA Sartori Limited Edition Pastorale Blend Sartori Company, USA www.sartoricheese.com

Spenwood Village Maid Cheese, UK www.villagemaidcheese.co.uk

Caciocavallo stagionato in cantina di pietra Caseificio Di Nucci, Italy www.caseificiodinucci.it

Montagnolo Affiné Elite Imports Limited, Germany www.elite-imports-limited.co.uk

Flower Marie Golden Cross Cheese Company, UK www.goldencrosscheese.co.uk

Barkham Blue Two Hoots Cheese, UK www.twohootscheese.co.uk

More than 250 cheese experts gathered at the NEC to whittle 2,777 entries down to just 58 SuperGold cheeses in the space of a morning’s judging, as well as awarding bronze, silver and gold medals to nearly 700 well-crafted cheeses. The SuperGolds were then re-tasted by a panel of 16 expert judges representing 13 nations, including Australia, France, Mexico and the US before they voted to select the Supreme Champion.

Available direct from OXFORD BLUE CHEESE COMPANY LTD 01844 338055 www.oxfordfinefood.com


Or From: Cheesecellar 020 7819 6001, Anthony Rowcliffe 01892 838999, Carron Lodge 01995 640352, Turners Fine Foods 01580 212818, Hamish Johnston 01728 621544, Paxton & Whitfield 01451 823460, Fromage to Age 01386 849345, Cheltenham Cheese 01242 529921, J & R Food Services 01392 366963, Leopard Dairy 01747 811188, New Wave Seafoods 01285 715160, Barry Gibbon 01235 818993, Abbey Cheese 01525 853040, Norbiton Cheese 020 8605 2412, Wellocks 01282 868800, West Horsley Dairy 01483 725000

Award-winning cheeses from the UK’s No.1 dairy company, Arla Foods Arla Foods is proud to produce award-winning cheeses from British and Danish cheesemakers and farmers. Our rich variety of cheeses are produced with care at our creameries, which are devoted to preserving the heritage of fine cheesemaking. Several of our creameries have been established for over a hundred years and still use traditional methods that have been passed down through generations of passionate master cheesemakers. To find out more about our quality cheeses and our award-winning portfolio, go to www.arlafoods.co.uk or contact Arla Foods on 0845 762 6434.


cut & dried

making more of british & continental charcuterie

Cannon & Cannon seeks new B2B sales manager as Davidson Knight moves on By MICK WHITWORTH

London-based wholesaler and retailer Cannon & Cannon is recruiting a business-to-business sales manager following the departure of Owen Davidson Knight, who has run its wholesale operation for the past nine months. Co-founder Sean Cannon said the new role would differ slightly from Davidson Knight’s but would “remain focused on our wholesale offer”. He told FFD: “2014 is set to be a defining year for us and we’re keen to find the right person to ensure wholesale clients continue to get the very best products and service.” A British charcuterie specialist, Cannon & Cannon has several London market stall locations, including one at Borough Market, plus a shop and restaurant in Brixton Village and an online shop.

Search is on for Hampshire’s best bangers Sausages and pies won’t be the only products on test at this year’s Great Hampshire Sausage and Pie Competition, taking place in Winchester on Tuesday March 18. Meatballs & faggots, home-cured bacon and Hampshire Charcuterie willl be among the categories in this year’s contest, sponsored by Lucas Ingredients, Dalziel and BPEX. The competition is run by food group Hampshire Fare to promote “local butchers and British meat”. A new category for 2014 is Young Sausage Maker for students and apprentices aged 24 and under. Last year’s competition – believed to be the only countylevel event of its kind – attracted 170 entries across 12 categories. Winners included Newlyns Farm Shop, which topped the charcuterie section with its ham hock terrine.

The Electric Eye Photography


Its wholesale clients range from pizza companies to craft beer pubs and Michelin-starred restaurants. Last year it ran a crowdfunding campaign to finance the launch of Meat Club, a charcuterie-box subscription service which was listed in the Guardian, Metro and Evening Standard among their top picks for Christmas gift ideas. Cannon said work had nearly been completed on the company’s

new wholesale and demonstration facility at Borough Market (FFD, October 2013) and plans were afoot for a Meat School: a programme of regular and one-off ‘meat adventures’, courses, experiences and mini-breaks covering the length and breadth of the British charcuterie industry. “It's all to be confirmed, but 2014 should see the first students called to class,” he said. Cannon said the new sales manager’s task would be to “consolidate and grow” the wholesale operation and reach shops, restaurants and pubs around the UK “and potentially beyond”. Applications are due to close in early February, so anyone interested should email Sean Cannon as soon as possible. sean@cannonandcannon.com www.cannonandcannon.com

Sobrasada among additions to dell’ami range for 2014

Patchwork collaborated with Chase after meeting at last year’s Abergavenny Food Festival

Patchwork in spirited partnership with Chase By MICK WHITWORTH

salami “with a hint of hand-picked rosemary from the garden at Lane Farm”; and a spicy chorizo made with sweet, bitter-sweet and hot paprika and lightly smoked over oak and beech wood. All are available in 90g sliced MAP packs or as 1kg whole salami. French products due to join the dell’ami line-up in February include a 1kg tear-shaped Jesus de Lyon, made from French pork tenderloin and ham; a 1kg dry-cured Rosette pork salami; and a Saucisse: a six-toeight-week dry-cured sausage made with pork from the Massif Central, usually served as an appetizer. New from Italy are a 3.5kg whole finocchiona (a fennel-flavoured, coarse Tuscan salami); a peppery Spianata Romana salami from Lazio; and a 100g sliced pack of porchetta: herb-flavoured pork loin, rolled in a pork belly and slowly roasted.

North Wales-based fresh and ambient paté maker Patchwork has introduced a trio of new ‘free-range’ ambient patés in association with premium spirits brand Chase Distillery. Packed in 90g jars, the lineup comprises free-range chicken liver with Chase smoked vodka, free-range duck liver with Chase marmalade vodka and free-range pheasant liver with Chase sloe & mulberry gin. Patchwork director Jenny Whitham told FFD: “Free-range is something a couple of highprofile customers have asked for, and in light of the fact that we’ve discontinued our organic range we thought it was worth pursuing. “I’d been playing with the thought of a smoked paté and came across smoked Chase vodka when we were at Abergavenny Food Festival last year. The collaboration grew from there, with duck liver and marmalade vodka being an obvious combination.”



Iberico sobrasada (left and centre) and Spanish cooking chorizo are just some of the newcomers to Cheese Cellar’s dell’ami list By MICK WHITWORTH

Cheese Cellar has added more British and Spanish charcuterie to its dell’ami Mediterranean-style foods range for winter 2013-14, with further French and Italian varieties set to arrive early in the New Year. Newcomers already listed include a paprika-rich Spanish chorizo suitable for pan-frying and serving in a tapas selection, which is available in a 280g three-pack or a 2.5kg foodservice pack of 28 sausages. Also new from Spain is a 1kg sobrasada: a soft, spreadable, chorizo-like cured sausage made in Guajillo from Iberico pigs. Cheese Cellar has also taken on distribution of three products made by East Anglia’s Suffolk Salami at Lane Farm, Brundish: its standard mild salami made with red wine, black pepper and garlic and cured for three months; rosemary

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014






Exciting New Range “Sunshine in a Jar” by Verita Vita Ltd

Tasty Luteniza Vegetable Spreads & Unique Fruit Preserves 100 % Natural & Organic Products No additives, artificial colours or preservatives www.veritavita.com · Tel: 01493 718 052 · info@veritavita.com 26

January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1



Contact: RH Amar · www.rhamar.com Tel: 01494 530200 · Email: ereynolds@rhamar.com


Y E: 01 TR IN 21 2 EN DL CH EA R D MA


James Strachan & Katherine Manning of Marybelle Dairy Great Taste Supreme Champion 2013

You don’t need to be a Great Taste Champion to get noticed. Great Taste is not just about the big winners. Putting your food to the test with our panel of over 400 experts is a quick way to get honest, straightforward and impartial feedback from chefs, buyers, food writers and retailers. A one-, two- or three-star accreditation means your food will stand out on the overcrowded retail shelves. Coupled with the extensive consumer and trade promotion by the Guild of Fine Food it will lead to increased sales and brand awareness. Quite simply Great Taste encourages greater confidence and commercial success in small businesses in the UK, Ireland and beyond. OPEN FOR ENTRY: Monday February 24 CLOSING DATE: Strictly Friday March 21 Members’ Fortnight February 10 - 23 Guild of Fine Food members can enter at a discounted rate and ahead of non-members. If members miss this fortnight they will still be able to enter up until Friday March 21 but at the full price.

Buyers and consumers look for and trust this logo. Great Taste is the recognised benchmark for speciality food & drink in the UK, Ireland and beyond. It confirms to buyers that they are selecting a great product. The logo helps discerning shoppers decide which product they should choose from an over-crowded shelf. It is quite simply the badge every great-tasting product should be wearing in 2014.

Go to finefoodworld.co.uk/gta to enter online or to download an entry form.

Looking for inspiration?

Make sure you add this key date in your diary Judith Millar, McCartney's Of Moira “It is great to be able meet so many producers under one roof and we always see plenty of new product ideas.”

@Balgove “A great day @FarmShop_Deli show today, great to see some of our existing suppliers and also to see some exciting new products!”

Stefan Najduch, Director of Barbakan Delicatessen “You don't get big companies buying up all the stand space – you're getting the smaller local businesses that produce lesser known product lines that can really help you differentiate your stock.”

@KarenRandall603 “Productive day at the @FarmShop_Deli show today. Three meetings and got to taste some lovely food :) #FSD2013”

REGISTRATION NOW LIVE farmshopanddelishow.co.uk/ffd @FarmShop_Deli #FSD2014 28

January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

product update

pickles & chutneys

Full complement From chutneys to confits, LYNDA SEARBY rounds-up the latest savoury accompaniments Since stepping out with new look labels last summer, Velsi’s pickles have seen a 15% increase in sales, according to founder Sherry Almeida. The Goa-inspired range has also been enlarged with a new roasted garlic pickle, which retails at £3.40 a jar and adds flavour to spaghetti bolognese or sandwiches. www.velsis.co.uk

Runoland organic gherkins in brine, imported from Poland by Morgiel Fine & Organic Foods, are sporting new labels. The cucumbers are preserved via lactic acid fermentation, an old fashioned method that doesn’t require any vinegar or sugar. RRP is £2.50, trade price £1.59. www.morgielfoods.co.uk

A distribution deal with Taste The View has ramped up production at The Natural Larder Company in County Cork and now its collection of sauces, relishes and rubs, which includes Rollicking red onion pickle (trade price £2.25, RRP £2.99 for 210g), is in 25 stores across Ireland.

True to its name, The Kitchens Fine Food Co has been busy in the kitchen developing a new green grape & date chutney and a trio of pickles for launch this spring (RRP approximately £3.50 for 280-300g). Hot smoked garlic pickle can be added to a sauce or roast potatoes, lime pickle is a tried and tested Indian meal accompaniment and the pickled chillies are for cooks who want to spice things up. www.thekitchensfinefoods.co.uk

for Chillilicious, whose fiery condiments have been treated to a bright new colour scheme. www.chillilicious. co.uk

l Fresh mango, ginger and apple combine to make Ajar Of mango chutney a fabulous accompaniment to cheeses and curries, according to Tracey Collins, who produces the chutney from a converted cowshed on Droop Farm in Dorset.

Best known for its jams and preserves, Kay’s Kitchen has plans to expand the chutney side of the business with a recipe using organic mushrooms grown on the fifth generation family farm in Northen Ireland’s ‘orchard county’, Armagh. Currently, the company’s only chutney is tomato & onion (RRP £1.99-2.50, trade price £1.45, 227g jar). www.kayskitchen.org


l Nizami Foods’ Indian-inspired

Patteson’s Pickles is a familiar name around Lincolnshire and Yorkshire, and its owners hope that a facelift will broaden its appeal to other parts of the UK. Besides a new label, the range will boast several new varieties, including sun dried tomato and smoked garlic chutney. The range is packed in 300-340g jars (RRP £2.79).

chutneys, pickles, sauces and oils have been re-launched with new branding for 2014. The range includes tomato chutney, sweet mango chutney and Andhra mango pickle. www.nizamifoods.co.uk


Even in a crowded category, there’s still room for a good old-fashioned sandwich pickle, and Usk River’s new Proper Pickle is just that. Chunks of apple, cauliflower and onion are steeped in malt vinegar and spices in a traditional recipe that is billed as the perfect companion for doorstep sandwiches, cold pies and ploughman’s lunches. Trade price is £2.95. RRP is £3.99-£4.25. www.uskriver.co.uk

Following feedback from visitors to the Royal Welsh Show, Welsh Specialty Foods has launched a new eight-strong collection of chutneys that celebrates the nation’s produce. Launched to coincide with St David’s Day, the line-up includes a Welsh ale chutney containing Tomos Watkins’ Cwrw Idris (Idris ale) and a Welsh onion marmalade. www.welshspecialityfoods.co.uk


Despite already having a gallery of over 130 preserves, Hawkshead Relish has managed to come up with three new chutneys: Tangy Lemon is a white fish and chicken accompaniment that fuses citrus, garlic and cardamom; Scrumpy Apple is an old-fashioned chutney made with Bramley apples, English cider and fresh garden herbs; and in Figgy Berry, the addition of Pinor Noir lends figs and cranberries a deep flavour that complements charcuterie, sausage and gammon. Trade price is £15.25 for a case of 16 (RRP £3.75 for 200g). www.hawksheadrelish.com

l It’s a case of new year, new look

After a successful launch in mini jar format, Fosters Traditional Foods is also making its spicy plum tomato chutney, farmers pickle, and caramelised onion & apple chutney available in standard size jars. Each of the products has an RRP of £2.59 www.fosters-foods.co.uk

l Described as “slightly sweet with a deliciously sticky consistency”, caramelised onion & fig chutney is available from The Bay Tree from the beginning of February. www.thebaytree.co.uk

l Bim’s Kitchen has tweaked the recipe of its baobab pepper jam for 2014. The African super fruit condiment now counts hibiscus, red peppers, garlic, ginger and cinnamon amongst its ingredients. www.bimskitchen.com

l New from The Pickled Village is the cheekily named Provocative Pickle, a ‘pickled onion pickle’ with balsamic vinegar and chillis for an extra kick (RRP £3.50). www.thepickledvillage.co.uk

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014


product update Atkins and Potts has launched a beetroot chutney and caramelised onions as part of its new British Provenance Foods range. Available from 2014 via Hider Food Imports, The Gorgeous Food Company and Suma, the patriotic range features a Union Jack on the label and uses as many ingredients as possible from British farmers. Wholesale price is £9.84 per case of 6, and RRP is £2.35 per jar. www.atkinsandpotts.co.uk

pickles & chutneys For an alternative to the usual pickled onions and beetroots, check out Elveden Farms’ new sweet and spicy pickled carrots (RRP £3 for 300g). Baby rainbow carrots grown on the Norfolk estate are pickled in vinegar according to a recipe devised by former royal chef Peter McBurnie, creating a balance of sweetness, tang and subtle heat. www.elveden.com

With his pickled shallots in balsamic vinegar, chefturned-condiment creator Patrick Le Mesurier has come up with a gourmet alternative to pickled onions. The marriage of British shallots with balsamic vinegar produces a rich, slightly sweet product while a lofty RRP of £4.10 for 280g (trade price £2.90) provides retailers with an opportunity to up-sell.

Paxton & Whitfield’s relationship with an artisan food producer from the French Pyrenees has yielded two new preserves. Nuts About Chestnuts is a rich, sticky chestnut paste with orange zest and walnuts, ideal for pairing with hard cow’s milk cheeses, blue cheeses and goats’ cheeses. The Nuts About Prunes preserve combines prunes and toasted hazelnuts. Trade price is £2.07 and RRP is £2.95 for 90g. www.paxtonandwhitfield.co.uk

Farm Shop, ...at Hartley hire Avon, Wilts Bradford on malade ts onion mar eet chilli jam In a Pickle sw ney harvest chut Rose Farm apple iced pear & In a Pickle sp


After two years on the farmers’ market circuit, Bath-based Langsfords Preserves is gearing up to court independent retailers. The range, which includes bread & butter pickle, pickled onions, courgette pickle, beetroot chutney, ploughman’s pickle, hot ratatouille chutney and onion marmalade, has been spruced up with new labels in readiness for retail sale. The chutneys and onion marmalade have a trade price of £2.10 (RRP £3.50) and the pickles have a trade price of £1.60 (RRP £2.70).

Since its introduction last summer, Wiltshire Gamekeepers Relish (RRP £3.99 for 290g) has become The Bath Food Company’s bestseller. The courgette relish was created to accompany cold meats, cheeses and game, and is available to order via Diverse Fine Food. www.thebathfoodcompany.com

relish lsamic onion In a Pickle ba

Wiltshire’s In a Pickle Food Co might be one of the smaller players in chutneys and pickles, but it is growing fast, with four new lines launching this spring. Mango chutney, balsamic onion relish, Chuffin ale chutney and In a Pickle Lily are all packed in 300g hexagonal jars (trade £2.50, RRP £3.75-3.99). www.inapicklefoodco.co.uk

January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

Pink’s latest jelly blends garlic, lime juice, lemongrass and green chilli, and is great mixed into stirfries, as a marinade or spread on hot, buttery toast. Available via Cotswold Fayre, green chilli jelly has a trade price of £2.77 and an RRP of £4 for a 220g jar. www.pinksfoods.co.uk






Nikki Booth says quinces from the local village of Burwell elevate her Burwell Paradise chutney from an ordinary apple chutney. “The fragrance of the quinces is stunning and makes this a real treat, both with cheese and cold meat,” says Booth, founder of Nikki’s Homemade. The fruity chutney is still something of a local secret, stocked by just a handful of outlets in Suffolk and Norfolk. A 225g jar retails at £3.50 with a wholesale price of £2.20. www.nikkishomemade.com

Top sellers…

To celebrate its 40th anniversary, Cottage Delight has packaged six of its bestsellers in a commemorative mop-top and is supporting the range with a ‘two for £4.50’ margin-protected promotion and point of sale materials. Retailers are also encouraged to take a picture of their ‘40 years’ merchandising display for a chance to win a free hamper. Included in the promotion are farmhouse pickle, caramelised onion chutney and sweet apple chutney.

Dart Valley Foods has added a miniature chutney gift selection to its Butler’s Grove range, giving consumers the chance to sample five of its best-selling varieties. The 42g jars of apple, real ale, very hot & spicy, fiery tomato and caramelised onion chutney are presented in a round, transparent pack with a suggested retail price of £6.60. Trade price for a case of 6 is £29.40. www.dartvalleyfoods.com

Miller Park, Station Road, Wigton, Cumbria CA7 9BA Tel/Fax: 016973 45974 Email: claire@claireshandmade.co.uk Web: www.claireshandmade.co.uk

Handmade sweet and savoury preserves and condiments Multi-award winning recipes made with all-natural ingredients

Made with love...

A colourful array of products from traditional favourites to innovative specialities Powerful branding and packaging with comprehensive retailer support Call Claire Kent for wholesale information…

015394 36614 • info@hawksheadrelish.com • hawksheadrelish.com 015394 36614 • info@hawksheadrelish.com • hawksheadrelish.com

Established in 2005 these products sell throughout the UK and further afield in both retail and catering packs.

Family owned Atkins and Potts produce a wide range of artisan products in their Hampshire kitchens.

email: info@atkinsandpotts.co.uk | web: www.atkinsandpotts.co.uk

The Atkins and Potts Inspired Dining range of relishes and chutneys include these Great Taste winners. These relishes and chutneys include both classic and contemporary flavour combinations. They are wonderful partners for cold meats and cheeses. They also make tasty dips, add extra bite to sandwiches, and add flavour and texture to casseroles. If you would like to try Atkins and Potts relishes and chutneys, please phone 01635 254 249 for a sample [trade only]. Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014


Cottage Delight FFD February Ad_Cottage Delight FFD February Ad 16/01/2014 10:52 Page

NEW r u o . ng .. hutney s, i c u at sc od Intr a-liciou d cold me ot an vouries figith h a s w lous ses and u b a e F che

Be inspired by our new collection for 2014

NEW One of our exciting new lines for 2014 call now for our new brochure T: 0845 900 3981

E: sales@thebaytree.co.uk


Celebrating 40 years of dedication to quality and taste. Available to order now T: 01538 382020 sales@cottagedelight.co.uk A family company passionate about good food.

Charlotte Brown’s Handmade

Artisan Preserves and Relishes

Passionate about Preserving What is it that makes Charlotte Brown’s products so good? Charlotte would say that fresh, high-quality ingredients, mastery of traditional methods and great attention to detail are what make the difference. Her growing band of devoted return customers rate her PiCCalilli, rasPBerry Conserve, Chilli Jam and other delicious treats outstanding. One described them as “life-changing”!

We are happy to send samples of these or our Great Taste winning Raspberry Conserve. Call or email today Tel 02380 671047 / 07826 835127 charlottebonney@hotmail.com



January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

We’re Spice Specialists We love all things spice! An award winning family business based in Co. Cork, Ireland.

Please contact our brilliant UK distributors, Cotswold Fayre for all supply queries on t: +44 (0)8456 121 201


For tips click onto http://www.greensaffron.com/videocookery


product update

pickles & chutneys

Citrus-based and inspired by Italian mostardo, Love Jam’s new London condiment for cheese and ham is a vinegar-free zone. It is pitched as a modern confit for hard and soft cheeses and is available in two jar sizes: 125g (trade £2.30, RRP £3.45) and 227g (trade £3.40, RRP £4.95). www.lovejamkitchen.com

Erin Grove Preserves has been selected as the supplier of preserves and chutneys for Sawers Delicatessen’s new artisan range. Sweet chilli jam, mango, chilli & lime chutney, smoky apricot chutney and Indian spiced pineapple chutney are the four chutney lines the County Fermanagh producer is making for Belfast’s oldest deli. www.eringrove.com

Cartwright & Butler, supplier to the likes of Fortnum & Mason, Harrods, Harvey Nichols, Selfridges and Liberty’s, has stepped up its focus on gifting, with gift sets for cheese and chutney lovers. Retail prices start from £21. www.cartwrightandbutler.co.uk

The Truckle Cheese Company has put its own twist on the classic piccalilli, creating a sweet and sour pickle of cauliflower, courgettes and silverskin onions with the background heat of red chilli. RRP is £3.95 for 290g and trade price is £14.10 per case of 6. www.trucklecheese.co.uk

There aren’t many gaps in the chutneys market but Ancient Recipes believes it has found one for a cucumber & spring onion relish. “The product has been developed to bring something fresh to the range and the sector as a whole. The flavour profile is similar to that of a piccalillitype product but with a fresher finish,” says the firm’s Katy Hamblin. RRP is £3.60 for 270g. www. lovejamkitchen. com

The latest creations to come out of chef Cyrus Todiwala’s London kitchen are minted mango & ginger relish (RRP £4) and British turkey pickle (RRP £5.50), developed to encourage people to buy turkey year-round. www.mrtodiwalaskitchen.com

Since May 2013, former Harrods and Selfridges food and product manager Andre Dang has been marketing an assortment of pickles and chutneys “that blokes can grab out of the cupboard and enjoy with cheeses, cold cuts, pies or meat”. The Manfood range is stocked by Fortnum & Mason and a number of London delis, and includes achar pickles, bread & butter pickles, ale chutney and smoked tomato sauce, all with an RRP of £3.95.

The Victorian Kitchen is going after the gifting market with the introduction of kilner style jars for three of its chutneys. Mr Pickwick’s piccalilli, The Abbot’s apple & cider chutney and Clara’s caramelised onion marmalade are now available in two sizes: 275g (RRP £5.25, trade price £21.60 for a case of six), and 460g (RRP £7.75, £32.10 for a case of 6). The Devon producer also offers a gift box containing all three varieties (RRP £11.25, trade price £23.25 for a three-pack). www.thevictoriankitchen.com


Chutneys fall off the wagon Chutneys developed in collaboration with local craft breweries offer provenance and tap into the real ale resurgence, so we can expect to see more beery chutneys appearing in coming months. Here are some of the latest introductions. Cheshire producer Galore has teamed up with Bollington Brewery to create an everyday chutney with root vegetables, dates and Oat Mill stout. Wholesale price is £1.95 and RRP is £2.95 for a 190g jar. New from cheese specialist Paxton & Whitfield is an ale chutney packed with Bramley apples, plums and Paxton’s very own No. 93 light ale. Trade price is £3.35 and RRP is £4.75 for 198g.

In January, The Bath Food Company launched a new fruit and apple chutney with London Pride ale, in conjunction with Fuller’s Brewery. RRP is £3.99 for 290g and the chutney is available to the trade via Diverse Fine Food. A collaboration with The Great Western Brewery Co has also yielded a fruit-based ale chutney with Edwin’s Ruby Porter, a strong ale with added port. The chutney, which has an RRP of £3.99 for a 285g jar, has a ‘rich dark consistency’ and ‘chocolate, liquorice tones’, says the producer. As we went to press, Norfolkbased Candi’s Chutney was about to launch a ‘full bodied’ Bramley apple & Norfolk ale chutney, using ale from local micro brewery Panther Brewery. RRP is

£3.75. Another producer doing a roaring trade in ale chutneys is Patchwork Paté. Its latest additions are tomato & roasted red pepper chutney with Unicorn ale & a sprinkle of cumin, and apricot & orange chutney with Wychcraft ale and a few little coriander seeds. Both retail for £2.70 for a 110g jar, with a trade price of £1.75. www.thebathfoodcompany.com www.candischutney.vpweb.co.uk www.galorefoods.co.uk www.patchwork-pate.co.uk www.paxtonandwhitfield.co.uk

Top sellers…

ire of Lincolnsh ...at Greens

mato & elicatessen to West Wold D y apple chutne ramelised elicatessen ca West Wold D armalade red onion m lle chutney ers ratatoui nn Si d an ts Sain rseradish elicatessen ho West Wold D mustard s piccalilli Jenny’s Jam

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014



RetailReady is a two day course that will steer you through the minefield of opening and running a fine food store. The course is designed to equip managers of prospective, new or developing delis and farm shops with the business essentials of fine food and drink retailing. The next course takes place on March 18-19 2014.

No one should even consider entering any form of fine food retail without completing the Retail Ready course at The Guild of Fine Food. The two day course is brilliantly structured offering advice on every aspect of the business from insider experts and successful retailers. It gave me insight I was lacking, to feel fully confident about getting started.

Visit www.finefoodworld.co.uk/ retailready for more details and an application form. Call us to find out more on 01747 825200.

Matthew Drennan, former editor of delicious. and aspiring deli owner

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January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

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product update


Caffeine fix ANNE BRUCE brews up the latest beans, pods and ground coffee available to speciality retailers Fancy a tree with your coffee? Grumpy Mule and Source Climate Change Coffee have teamed up to launch organic La Sierra Cloud Forest coffee in January. This is a single origin Mexican organic coffee with a smooth, medium to dark roast. For every bag sold, local farmers plant trees to support the forest and their families. Each bag and tin has a tracking number to show the farmers’ conservation efforts in the cloud forest of origin. The coffee, which has praline and nutty notes, is suitable for drinking any time of the day. The 227g bags of ground coffee have a trade price of £2.78 each (RRP £4.29) while 250g tins of beans cost £4.55 (RRP £6.99).

Top sellers…

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www.grumpymule.co.uk www.sourceclimatechange.com

West Sussex-based coffee and tea merchant Edgcumbes has launched three new coffees to the retail sector. The new range includes Fairtrade Sussex blend (£3.68/bag); Thakeham Colombian blend (£3.45/bag) and Amberley Brazil/Rwandan blend (£3.26/bag). The company, which has supplied the catering market for 30 years, developed the new range following enquiries from customers. Director Alice Rendle says: “Customers who had tasted our products in cafés and restaurants wanted to be able to enjoy the same thing at home.” Products are packed in shelf-ready boxes (6 x 227g bags) for merchandising. Bulk and small orders can be fulfilled. www.edgcumbes.co.uk

Union Hand-Roasted has recently added Bright Note beans to its wholebean retail range. Described as smooth and sweet with tones of almonds, this coffee is a mix of beans from Guatemala and Brazil. The company sources all its coffee directly from producers and roasts beans by hand in small batches. Retail cases of 6 x 227g (RRP £4.95-£5.25 per bag) can be bought for £22.15 from selected wholesalers. www.unionroasted.com

Fairtrade supplier Revolver Co-operative has unveiled new packaging as well as a new collection of taster mini-packs priced at £1. The new mini-pack range includes Costa Rica Tarrazú and Colombia Anserma, both in 70g (10 cup) packs, and Cuba Crystal Mountain and Ethiopia Yirgacheffe in 56g (8 cup) packs. Revolver can also supply a clip strip for retail display in each box of £1 packs. The new-look range also includes full sized versions of the minis, in 227g roast and ground packs (RRPs range from £2.99 to £3.49) as well as 250g wholebean Colombia Anserma (RRP £3.34) and Cuba Crystal Mountain (RSP £4.49). These coffees have been produced in partnership with cooperatives such as the CoopeTarrazú in Costa Rica and across the developing world. A range of organic coffees is also available to the fine food trade. Products are available through wholesalers including Heart Distribution, HEFF and Essential.

Fairtrade company Equal Exchange is relaunching its Grown by Women range, as well as its four other coffees, in smaller bags. This is the company’s response to feedback from customers suggesting that 227g bags, rather than the previous 500g bags, would be more user-friendly. Equal Exchange’s Grown by Women bean line-up includes: medium roast, Dark City roast, espresso roast, decaffeinated, Mt Elgon Gumutindo AA and Women Farmers Grew These Beans. The company has also repackaged its other coffee beans – Italian roast, Colombian Excelso, Ethiopian Yirgacheffe and Sumatran Takengon – in smaller bags. Cases of 8 x 227g (RRP £4.29 each) are available for £25.74 now from wholefood wholesalers.



Ayrshire-based start up Roundsquare Roastery has launched a range of ethically sourced, organic and locally roasted Arabica coffees. The range includes a house blend from Brazil and El Salvador, house decaf Guatemalan beans, Brazil single origin, El Salvador single origin, Gentlemen’s blend, Guatemala single origin and also a “half-caff” blend for customers keeping their caffeine consumption down. House blend and Brazil single origin coffees are available in 1kg bags at a trade price of £13.95 (RRP £18). All of the range is available in 250g retail bags (trade £3.75, RRP £5.95) although Decaff (trade £4.15, RRP £6.96) and Half Caff (trade £4, RRP £6.25) cost slightly more than other varieties. www.roundsquareroastery.co.uk

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014



Parma - Italy, May 05-08 2014 Further information: www.cibus.it | cibus@fiereparma.it


January-February 2014 路 Vol.15 Issue 1

Follow us on:

product update Devon-based Little’s has added a new variety to its range of flavoured instant coffees. The chocolate orange coffee, which is on sale now, is the first new flavour to be added to the range since its launch eight years ago. It is made using Arabica coffee with natural orange oil and natural cocoa extracts. “We wanted to launch a really solid tenth flavour,” says business development director Will Little. ”We felt the classic combination of chocolate and orange worked really well with our coffee,” The new flavour, which comes in 50g jars (RRP £2.99), is available direct from Little’s and through distributors Cotsworld Fayre and The Cress Co.


Espresso coffee pod company Aromo offers a range of four espresso coffee pods aimed at the “home barista”. The pods contain 7g of premium espresso coffee, pre-tamped in a sachet. The ranges consists of Bounce (100% Arabica), Boost premium blend, Buzz (French Roast) and the decaffeinated Buzz Lite. Aromo also sells a mixed box of 100 pods with 25 of each of the varieties above. Pods are sold in packs of 100 pods, which range in RRP from £21 to £26.

Top sellers…


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The 106-year-old North East tea and coffee merchant Ringtons has come up with a Signature range available in both whole bean and ground formats. The collection includes Fairtrade espresso, dark roast and Fortissimo espresso, all in 125g packs (RRP £3.50). Cases of 8 bags cost £16.80. These retail packs are a new route to market for the company, which has previously specialised in supplying hotels and cafés. Head of Ringtons Beverages Stephen Drysdale says: “Our clients are always being asked by their customers which coffee they are drinking in-store so they can buy it themselves.” Cotswold Fayre’s January catalogue features the addition of Jimmy’s British iced coffee with semi-skimmed milk (330ml, £13.75 for case of 12) and Hada Del Café medium roast, dark roast and espresso roast coffees (£23.30 for case of 6 x 227g). All of the coffees in the Hada Del Café range are free from flavourings and additives.


Taylors of Harrogate will be launching a new single origin range of coffees in March. The line-up (pictured below) includes Colombia medium-dark roast beans or ground, Rwanda medium roast ground coffee, Indonesia dark roast beans or ground and dark roast ground and Guatemala medium roast ground coffee. All varieties will come in 227g bags with an RRP of £3.99. www.taylorscoffee.co.uk


Objets de Café specialises in sourcing coffee from former warzones. The range, which went on sale in December 2013, includes three single origin coffees in 250g pouches: Organic Ethiopian Bete Maryam, Guatemalan Casa Mia and Rwandan Mille Collines. There is also a Donna Lucia blended coffee which is organic and Fairtrade, sourced from coffee growers in Central and South America, Africa and India. Each bag has a trade price of £4.30 and an RRP of £6. www.objetsdecafe .com

Until the 1940s, Cuban coffee plantations were famed for producing some of the world’s finest coffee beans, but production has since fallen into decline. Alma de Cuba is hoping to revive the country’s coffee reputation with beans that are batch roasted in small quantities and shipped to order. A 250g tin sells for £15 (beans or ground). www.almacuba.com

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014


FFW-Dec-2013-1_Layout 1 13/12/2013 12:15 Page 1

Great Taste Award winning coffees We are proud to be the winners of no less than 6 Great Taste Awards. And that’s on top of 8 awards from the previous year.

Let the coffees speak for themselves The Grumpy Mule coffee range includes ground coffee, coffees beans and gift tins for both retail and wet coffee sales. With Fairtrade, organic and unique coffees available, this is the coffee of choice for today’s coffee lover. The Roastery, Bent Ley Industrial Estate, Holmfirth, HD9 4EP.

Tel: 01484 855500 email: coffee@grumpymule.co.uk


tavola 2014: from classic delicatessen products to trendy food. 16-17-18 MARCH 2014 Trade fair for fine food KORTRIJK XPO retailers and delicatessens BELGIUM Open from 10-19 hrs, Tuesday until 18 hrs Find inspiration at tavola 2014 among our unique range of high quality food and exclusive delicatessen products, presented for you by 400 dynamic market leaders and artisanal producers.


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FREE ENTRANCE: register at www.tavola-xpo.be with code FF463


January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1 120507 TAVOLA ADV FINE FOOD DIGEST 100x287.indd 1

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show preview

Racing to success The Cheltenham trade show has moved to a bigger, more accessible venue


aving changed the timing but kept the venue for its The Source Trade Show, Hale Events has done exactly the opposite with sister event The Food & Drink Trade Show in Cheltenham. It’s a testament to the demand for stands at the inaugural show last February that Hale has had to upsize from the Town Hall to The Centaur, a purpose-built exhibition hall at Cheltenham Race Course. The 2014 show takes place – same time as last year – on Monday February 24 and Tuesday 25 with over 100 exhibitors expected to be showcasing their products and services to the retail and foodservice sectors. Last year saw buyers from farm shops, supermarkets, delicatessens, caterers, public houses, hotels and restaurants visit the show to sample speciality food and drink from the local area and further afield. From beer to biscuits, ice cream to EPoS

Need to know Where and when? The Centaur, Cheltenham Racecourse, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire GL50 4SH February 24-25 Directions By road, Cheltenham is situated on junctions 10, 11 and 11a of the M5 while Cheltenham Spa

and cheese to chocolate, The Food & Drink Trade Show will present a range of buying opportunities for those visiting in 2014. While the new venue on the edge-of-town offers more space for exhibitors it will also be more accessible for visitors, and parking at The Centaur is free. Hale Events set up the show last year after identifying a need for a trade show to cater for retailers and producers from Wales, the Midlands and the South West in the area north of Bristol and south of Birmingham. Once again regional food groups Taste of the West and Heart of England Fine Foods are partnering the show along with Food and Drink Wales. For more information about the Cheltenham show visit the show website or follow @SourceFoodDrink #foodchelt on Twitter. www.thefoodanddrinktradeshow. co.uk

railway station is well served by CrossCountry trains and First Great Western. Information is available via National Rail Enquiries on 08457 484950. How do I register? Register for your free badge online at www. thefoodanddrinktradeshow.co.uk or call the ticket hotline on 01934 733456.

Who will be there? Alderley Natural Spring Water Avlaki Superb Organic Olive Oils Bake at Home BCR Associates Bell and Loxton Brennen & Brown Butcombe Brewery Buttermilk Confections Callestick Farm Dairy Ice cream Celtic Vale Mineral Water Cornish Connection Pasty Co Cotswold Fine Food Crantock Bakery CSY Retail Systems Dipnation Elite Frozen Foods Ethical Addictions Coffee F A Gill Five Valleys Cordials Gloucester Brewery Gran Stead’s Ginger In a Pickle Food Co James Chocolates Janes Beverages Jumokeh L B S (South West) Lodge Farm Kitchen Love Food Love Italy Lovely Drinks M D Tea Martins Meats Metro Drinks *List correct at time of going to press

Mr Chills Sweet Emporium Muddy Wellies North Cotswold Brewery Nurses Cottage Okemoor Quality Foods Old Mill Jackson Open Retail Solutions Original Manx Fudge Factory Pixley Berries Posh Pasty Company Primrose's Kitchen Salcombe Dairy Samways Fine Food Distribution Scarlett & Mustard Simple Suppers Somerset Cheese Co Spicease Stag Bakeries Stratford Fine Foods Stroud Brewery Sue Gilmour Chocolate Taste of the West The Artisan Baker The Cotswold Brewing Company The Sausage Shed Tideford Organic Foods Tor Food Consultancy Whiteys Gourmet Popcorn Woodchester Meat Company Zenith Epos

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014



THE OILS Bottled unfiltered within weeks to capture the amazing aroma & taste of the new oil

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January-February 2014 路 Vol.15 Issue 1 80200 WS Fine Food ad 100x141.5.indd 2

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products, promotions & people

New-look Fudges biscuits to cater for indies and multiples

Cottage Delight broadens range further for 2014 By MICHAEL LANE


Dorset-based biscuitmaker Fudges has said it remains committed to its independent retail customer base despite launching the first phase of its rebranded and revamped range into multiples first. Following its unveiling in supermarkets in October, the 15-strong savoury line-up of the Thomas J Fudge’s Remarkable Bakery range is now available to the speciality food trade. MD Steve Fudge told FFD that the reason for this launch was due to “feasibility” because distributors catering for delis and farm shops needed more advanced notice than possible. “Catalogues in the independent sector are generally difficult to change mid-season,” he said. “We weren’t in a position in January 2013 to even show them a packaging concept.” Fudge said that the 12 sweet varieties, including new versions of the company’s popular flapjacks and Florentines, would be available to supermarkets and independents when launched in March. He added that he expects the range to provide enough scope for both sectors. “There will be some products that will be in every outlet, both independent and multiples,” he said. “But, equally, it’s highly unlikely that one multiple will take all 27 of our lines. So there’s massive choice

Steve Fudge said the Thomas J Fudge’s range gives retailers “massive choice and opportunity”

and opportunity.” Fudge added that the company has a team offering “dedicated support” to independent customers. The Thomas J Fudge’s savoury range features a selection of biscuits for cheese, crispbread-style snacks, crackers and flatbreads. Varieties include Intense & Tangy Stilton Melts, Deep Black Charcoal Hearts, Crispy Layered Cheddar & Chive Pufferies, Crisp & Savoury Seed & Oat Flats and Earthy Beetroot & Horseradish Shards. RRPs range from £2.25 to £4.50. Steve Fudge told FFD that the name had been changed to dispel any consumer confusion about what the company produces and that the

2014 predictions: Samba, street food and more baking By PATRICK McGUIGAN

Latin American flavours, street food and cooking kits have been tipped as hot trends for the deli and farm shop sector in 2014. According to fine food wholesalers contacted by FFD, the World Cup in Brazil is likely to spark consumer interest in Latin American foods and flavours. “The World Cup is definitely going to have an impact and people will be looking for authentic flavours,” said Piers Adamson, MD of Bespoke Foods. “Chipotle is going to be big, as will Mexican food.” Simon Hurley, director at Pride of Place, said interest in South American food will also tie in with new products inspired by the street food scene. “The intensity of flavours you see in street food is going to come through in

retail – more spices and chilli, and Vietnamese, Korean, Brazilian and Spanish flavours,” he said. “Meat is a big part of street food, especially pork, so there’s an opportunity for farm shop meat counters to crosssell with spicy sauces.” Cottage Delight has developed a range of taster-size spicy sauces, such as hickory smoked barbecue

Baking kits will enjoy continued popularity fuelled by programmes like Great British Bake Off

range had been streamlined to 27 from around 40 lines to improve quality. “We were putting a massive amount of energy into making the dogs work and we took our eye off the hero products,” he said, adding that new product development was on-going with more 100 lines being tested. As well as exploring seasonal lines Fudge said that the bakery would unveil “big surprises” in the sweet biscuit category later this year as well as some tweaks to savoury lines. He added that 2013’s sales figures would be a substantial increase on 2012’s £8.5m. www.thomasjfudges.co.uk

sauce and lime & chilli sauce, to tap into the trend and to meet demand from consumers for smaller pack sizes. “With the economy continuing to make a very slow recovery, more consumers have found ways to tighten their spend on luxury items,” said marketing co-ordinator Galia Davies. “As consumers become more savvy, smaller portion options are becoming popular.” Cooking and baking kits, which act as a ‘halfway house’ between cooking from scratch and buying a ready-made product are also predicted to increase in popularity. “The cooking and baking at home phenomenon, which has been driven by programmes like the Great British Bake Off, is definitely going to continue,” said Paul Hargreaves, MD of Cotswold Fayre, which is introducing more baking mixes, decorations and icings, plus meal kits under the Kent’s Kitchen brand. Diverse Fine Food has introduced a similar range called Coconut Kitchen.

Even as it prepares to celebrate its 40th year in business, Cottage Delight is showing no signs of slowing up NPD with the launch of its latest catalogue. The Staffordshire-based producer’s Everyday 2014 brochure, which hits desks on February 1, contains a raft of new lines and range extensions as well as many old favourites from previous years. Among the new ranges are soft set saucy jellies, which can be used as dips and dressings or deployed in the kitchen to make glazes or to perk up gravies. Apple & sage, roasted red pepper & chilli, redcurrant & red onion and lime & ginger will be available in May and have an RRP of £2.95. Cottage Delight has also developed several gourmet salt & peppers (RRP £3.50) and an assortment of gourmet mustards and dressings – including white truffle dressing and fig mustard – in smaller portion jars (RRP £2.95) to allow consumers to explore the full range. In addition, the company will now offer jarred curry sauces, ranging in heat from korma to naga vindaloo, all with an RRP of £3.95. Following “a real success story” over the Christmas period, Cottage Delight will sell three gardeningthemed micro-brewed beers all year round. Strong ruby Hairy Potter, golden premium Gardener’s Rest and light, hoppy Metrognome all feature “quirky” illustrated labels and have an RRP of £2.65. Some of the changes to the sweeter side of the producer’s offer include adding blackberry jam, lemon & lime marmalade and passion fruit & mango curd to its extensive list of preserves as well as introducing a sea salted caramel sauce. It has also added a touch of savouriness to its fudge line-up with a sea salted caramel flavour and a new vanilla variety. www.cottagedelight.co.uk

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014


Snowdrops in Britain & Lemons in Sic’ly (These are a few of our Favourite Things… in February)

Folkington’s Juices, The Workshop, Endlewick House, Arlington, East Sussex BN26 6RU 01323 485602 info@folkingtons.com



Join hundreds of other independent fine food shops around the UK to promote the Great Taste winners you stock. We will send you, free of charge, all you need for a successful promotion to help your customers understand more about Great Taste and to help you to sell more products with this distinctive logo.


This year ’s fine as judged st food and drink by the expe rts

The pack contains:


01 GTB



• Copies of Great Taste book for your customers • Great Taste apron • Branded bunting and posters • Window sticker promoting your award-winning food and drink • Recipe cards highlighting Great Taste winners


Order now while stock lasts 15/11/20

13 18:1 5


January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

Sign up for your free promotional kit by contacting karen.price@finefoodworld.co.uk or call her on 01747 825200.


Top chefs tell CLARE HARGREAVES their deli essentials

what's new

20cl and 50cl bottles (RRPs £10 and £17.99 respectively).

Extra formats

Bigger bags

The Fabulous Food Company www.thefabfoodco.co.uk

The producer now offers is meringues and macaroons in new packaging options. Dinner Party meringues now come in twin-pack cello boxes while small meringues can be supplied in gift boxes, too. The Fabulous Food Co has also developed catering packs for delis and farm shops that want to create displays of stacked meringues. The company’s macaroons are now also available in cello boxes and catering packs.

Spiced orange gin



Already available in 40g bags, Just’s jalapeno flavour will join the producer’s other three flavours in 150g share bags. The company said the move was down to demand from consumers at food shows. The larger size bags have an RRP of £1.85 and come in cases of 12 units (£12.64+VAT). As with all of Just’s crisps, these are made from potatoes grown on the family farm and are fried in Just cold pressed rapeseed oil.

Head chef at The Bath Priory www.thebathpriory.co.uk

Burrow Hill cider vinegar 50cl www.ciderbrandy.co.uk

This is such a balanced, well-rounded vinegar that you can almost drink it. And after enough ciders, you probably could. We use it with pork, or with anything that has apple in it, as it really brings it to life. It’s also great with scallops. It is unpasteurised, tastes wonderfully natural and is far smoother than other vinegars. I like the fact that when you buy this vinegar you’re also buying into an age-old tradition, being continued by Julian Temperley at Burrow Hill. We buy it in cases of 12x50cl bottles.

Jeeny’s palm sugar Available from www.naturekitchen.co.uk

Palm sugar is a dark, unrefined sugar that’s obtained from the sap of the palmyra tree, boiled down to a thick, dark syrup. Jeeny’s is sold in easy-to-use cubes. I love this sugar so much that I have three types at home. I grate it over crumbles to give them a caramel texture. Even raw it’s nice. In contrast to ‘normal’ sugar, palm sugar is not sickly sweet, and more rounded. I buy it in 260g boxes from Chinese supermarkets.

ISABELINA TRADING CO www.isabelina.co.uk


North East-based Isabelina Trading Co has worked with Spanish food technologists to develop Isabelina Gold (250ml, RRP £7.95) – an extra virgin olive oil that tastes like butter but contains a fraction of the saturated fat. The firm claims that this is the first oil of its type on the market as it features scientifically-extracted butter flavour molecules rather than buttermilk, plant extract or chemical flavourings. All of the Spanish olive oil used in Isabelina’s products is fully traceable.

Potts’ to beef up roasts with new kits Sauce specialist Potts’ Partnership has developed a range of new kits designed to ease the burden of cooking the traditional Sunday roast. The five kits are tailored to cover beef, pork, chicken, lamb and turkey roasts and all contain four key components. Each kit, launched as part of the company’s Divine Dinner collection, features a flavoured gravy as well as condiments and seasonings depending on the meat. Other items include stuffing mixes, salts and roasting bags. For example, Potts’ Roasting Kit for Beef consists of a beef & red wine gravy, a Yorkshire pudding batter mix with rosemary, a chilli hot horseradish

Sam Moody

Butter flavoured oil

SPENCERFIELD SPIRIT CO The Scottish distiller has come up with a new twist on its Edinburgh Gin. The new flavour sees the original gin infused with fresh, red, sweet oranges from Valencia, creating “a warming gin with hints of cinnamon and spice and a honeyed raisin finish”. The producer says the drink can be enjoyed neat, in a long drink with soda or even mixed with cava or Champagne. Spiced orange Edinburgh Gin comes in


Looking for producers accredited by the Guild of Fine Food? Follow the logo

& mustard sauce and a roasting bag. All sauces come in easy-to-use disposable sachets, and condiments are presented in table-ready jars. “This is a really exciting step forward for Potts as it’s completely new to market,” said creator Owen Potts. “TV chefs and cookbooks often do their own variation of a traditional roast but, whilst the ‘roast trend’ has caught on, it remains one of the most daunting meals for amateur cooks. The Potts’ Roasting Kits make this British Classic dish supremely simple.” Each kit has an RRP of £5 and a trade price of £3.99. It comes in trade cases of six units. www.pottspartnership.co.uk

Trealy Farm Monmouthshire beech-smoked air-dried ham www.trealyfarm.com

This air-dried fermented ham is made in the style of a German or Austrian Schinkenspeck. It’s cold-smoked for around an hour over beech wood – which gives it a lovely, sweet flavour – and then air-dried for about six weeks. It’s far meatier, and less salty, than bacon, and it has fabulous texture. Thinly sliced, it adds masses of flavour to any dish. We often pair it with fish, which it really brings to life. We buy it in 1kg pieces though Premier.

Ivy House Farm clotted cream www.ivyhousefarmdairy.co.uk

This Somerset dairy farm, near Frome, is just down the road. We heard about it because we were buying vegetables from Hartley Farm and discovered that the farmer’s brother had a herd of Jersey cows at Ivy House Farm nearby. I love all of their stuff, but the clotted cream – cooked in the traditional way – is amazing. Wonderfully rich, you’d be hard pressed to beat it on a scone. You can almost taste the terroir. We buy the clotted cream in 500g tubs direct from the farm. It’s a bit more expensive than supermarket produce but it’s a fair price for the amazing quality.

Sharpham Park wholegrain spelt flour www.sharphampark.com

All of Sharpham’s spelt flours are good, but this one is really special. It’s nutty, full-bodied and wholesome, and stoneground to retain the grain’s natural oils and nutrients. Bread made with it will fill you up quite quickly but you don’t feel uncomfortable as it’s really easy to digest, which means many coeliacs find they can eat it. We use the flour to make the small spelt and toasted oats loaves that we offer our diners. Occasionally we make bloomers from it too. I buy the flour in 25kg sacks direct from Sharpham Park, which is just over 30 miles away.

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Vol.15 Issue 1 January-February 2014


Riggs Autopack Ltd manufacture volumetric depositors and filling machines for artisan food producers. Designed for a single operator, our semi-automatic filling machines provide damage free and highly precise depositing of hot or cold products and accurately fill most types or size of container. Find out more at www.autopack.co.uk or call our Lancashire office on 01282 440040. Products manufactured using our equipment include • Jam, Honey and Preserves • Chutney • Mustard • Pickles

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Fosters Traditional Foods Ltd, Great Bowden Road, Market Harborough, LE16 7DE | Tel: 01858 438000 www.fosters-foods.co.uk


January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1


Looking for producers accredited by the Guild of Fine Food? Follow the logo

Swedish brewers and distillers seek UK listings By MICHAEL LANE

Drinks like glögg and punsch may not be many people’s tipple of choice but we could be seeing more of them on independent retailer’s shelves if Business Sweden gets its way. The UK arm of the Swedish trade body is assisting a number of the country’s artisan brewers, cidermakers and distillers to find listings in Britain and has already held an event at the end of November showcasing several brands. It is hoped that these producers can capitalise on growing British interest in Scandinavian culture. “Over the past few years Scandinavian lifestyle, including food and drink, has experienced increased worldwide interest with the popularity of films and TV programmes, like The Killing and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” said Business Sweden UK & Ireland area manager Fredrik Häggström.

Among the hopeful producers are vinglögg (traditional mulled wine) and schnapps specialist Saturnus and family-run Norrtelje Brenneri, which makes traditional flavoured liquours known as punsch, on the Baltic coast. As well as several gin and vodka distilleries, Northern Sweden’s Brännland Cider is looking to court

retailers with its ice cider – essentially an ice wine made with apples – and brewery Dugges Ales is looking to export more of its modern craft beers following success in countries like the USA. For more details, contact Business Sweden. www.business-sweden.se

FULL OF COLOUR: Ethical chocolate brand Organic Seed and Bean has unveiled a new look created by brand packaging consultancy Family (and friends). The range now has a new strapline – “Kaleidoscopic Moments of pleasure” – and each pack features a petal-like kaleidoscope design. The brand launched three new flavours in January: Cornish Sea Salt & West Indian lime milk chocolate 37%, ginger dark 58% cocoa and raspberry & vanilla creamy white 30% cocoa. www.seedandbean.co.uk

Easter ideas

Some products you might consider for the forthcoming Spring selling opportunity Devon’s award winning @ the bakery will be adding three new flavours of traybake to join its Great Taste two-star gluten-free double chocolate brownie in time for Easter. Raspberry & Amaretto, orange & Cointreau and stem ginger come in whole or half trays and are delivered ambient, ready for portioning into 24 pieces or as required for your deli or confectionary counter. The glutenfree brownies cost £30 per tray while the new flavours have a trade price of £33 per tray. This is the first time these products have been made available to the trade. www.dartfinefood.co.uk

firm says that the large egg provides “instant theatre” and an eyecatching focal point for in-store displays. The egg (retail value £34.95) is included free as part of this display pack, which includes a case of each product pictured and costs £387.92. www.cottagedelight.co.uk

foiled dark chocolate rattle egg sets filled with non-dairy treats to complement the chocolatier’s bestselling foiled milk chocolate rattle eggs. Boxed 175g eggs are available in cases of 6 units and 150g rattle eggs come in cases of 12. Wholesale unit prices start at £4.50.

Pandora Bell describes its real eggshell with praline chocolate as a “must-have” indulgence this Easter. The luxury confectionery label has taken a real chicken’s egg and filled it with praline chocolate to create something “chic, petite and delicious”. It is available as a single egg (RRP £3.50, case size 40 x 50g)


Cottage Delight has designed an Easter merchandising pack with a 36% sell-out margin. It includes its centre piece 1.2kg Family Egg as well as hand-baked Easter specialities like Simnel cake. The Staffordshire

Dorset-based Chococo has a “stunning” Easter range that includes some new flavours for 2014. Its boxed 175g handmade 43% Venezuelan milk chocolate eggs come studded with chocolate butterflies and flowers, dinosaurs, chunks of honeycomb or popping candy, while 70% dark chocolate eggs are studded with crystallised ginger. There are also new 150g

in the run-up to Easter or in a gift box of three (RRP £12.95, case size 7 x 150g). www.pandorabell.ie

Using its own blend of chocolate, Truly Chocolates has laid claim to the UK market’s only solid Easter egg. This “400g of pure heaven” comes split into two halves and can

be made with up to two blends of chocolate, including no added sugar, chocolate orange, dark, milk and white chocolate. The product is packaged in an Easter-themed box with an RRP of £10. The minimum wholesale order quantity is 30 units. www.trulychocolates.co.uk

For those seeking a bit of heat for their Easter meals or a gift for those less-partial to sweet things, there is the recently rebranded Chancham pepper sauce. Now in an easierto-pour bottle it is described by the producer “as a favourite with lovers of spicy food”. The sauce, which won a Great Taste star in 2010, is made with habanero peppers, mustard, red onion and a tangy vinegar base. Each bottle has an RRP of £2.80. www. chancham.com

Vol.15 Issue 1 January-February 2014


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Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014



Northern exposure With the ‘Harrods of Scotland’ about to undertake a major food hall extension, we talk to House of Bruar food buying chief Robert Thain (right) about this powerful showcase for 300-plus suppliers

Deli of the Month INTERVIEW BY mick whitworth


t’s a brisk November morning in the heart of the Grampian mountains. Winter is late arriving, the leaves on the trees have just turned from green to copper. What a beautiful day for a bracing Highlands walk. Instead of which, I am teetering precariously on an upended log, being laughed at by assorted Scotsmen as I take photos of Robert Thain, food buying manager for the House of Bruar. We’re in the famous Perthshire clothing and lifestyle store’s central courtyard, just outside the doors to its food hall. I want to get a shot of Thain in front of his seasonal veg display without showing the wooden reindeer and other festive trimmings that will make the photo look out-ofdate by January. Thain – smartly turned out in suitably House of Bruar country style, including a tie with a shotgun-


January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

locals, it has grown into a genuinely cartridge motif – is doing his best to unique destination store, with annual look serious. But he eventually cracks, sales around the £20m mark. It also throwing his head back in a guffaw employs 200 people in a part of the and providing me with a photo that world where year-round jobs are hard I will later email to him for the family to come by. album. “There’s not been a year go by Robert Thain has worked for when we haven’t expanded in terms House of Bruar man and boy, and has of retail space,” says Thain, adding: just given me a whistlestop tour of the “If you’d told someone back in the site he knows so well. I’m surprised day that it would be like this, they to find that the food hall, well known would have laughed at you.” to the trade UK-wide as one of our top speciality food outlets, is a We never negotiate [with suppliers] relatively modest over volume and price. We see about part of the whole – although it’s about 1.4 million visitors a year. That’s to get bigger. what we bring to the party. House of Bruar The 11 acre site today contains was opened in 1995 by Yorkshiresome 100,000 sq ft of retail space, born Mark Birkbeck and his wife with the emphasis on premium-label Linda. The couple created the Jumpers textiles, including country brands like fashion chain in the 1980s, building it Barbour, Musto and Orvis, as well as to 130 stores and £100m sales before gifts, kitchenware, toys, fishing tackle selling it in 1992 and heading north. and even contemporary art, plus a Their Scottish venture too began 200-seater restaurant adjoining the as a clothing-led business, based food hall. The ethos throughout, says on the site of a former Highlands Thain, is to promote “the best of hotel near the Falls of Bruar and Scottish products, then British, and the village of Blair Atholl. Despite then the rest of the world”. its distance from big population The client base is not as heavily centres and the initial scepticism of

tourist-led as you might expect, but the remote location dictates most shoppers come from outside the immediate area. The key trading months are August to October, when the nearby hunting and fishing lodges are full, but Thain says recent years have seen House of Bruar, sited slap on the A9 about nine miles north of Pitlochry, become “more of a destination” for shoppers living further afield, as well as a regular stop-off for commuters. “There are a lot of people from Edinburgh or Inverness who will meet in the middle, have some breakfast or lunch and do some shopping.” The biggest challenge is not so much the 80-mile distance from Edinburgh as the unpredictable winter weather. “If the A9 is shut we don’t see anybody,” says Thain, “so if we have a stinker of a winter it can change the outcome of the whole year.” Tourist body Visit Scotland reckons House of Bruar is “Scotland’s most prestigious independent store”, and the business is often described as “the Harrods of Scotland”. But that doesn’t quite capture it, with both the stunning location and the emphasis


products, promotions & people Key brands are merchandised in blocks around the store, maximising their impact

and a separate charcuterie section, too. And another planned change is the installation of an in-house bakery, supplying both the food hall and restaurant. So Thain looks likely to be adding more names to supplier list that already numbers around 340, the bulk of them supplying direct rather than through wholesalers. But hopeful producers shouldn’t expect a freefor-all. Not a single new line goes onshelf in the food hall without being personally approved by chairman Mark Birkbeck. Thain says he aims to build longterm relationships with producers, big and small, who recognise what House of Bruar can do for them, and even a cursory glance around the food hall shows how forcefully House of Bruar pushes key brands such as Walkers Shortbread, Brodies tea and coffee or Whitakers chocolates. Cottage Delight commands a whole section in what almost looks like an in-store concession, and when I suggest to Thain it’s a virtual showroom for the Staffordshire producer, he doesn’t disagree. Apparently, Cottage Delight boss Nigel Cope is a personal friend of the Birkbecks, but Thain tells me: “This is really what we hang our hat on – our ability to give that exposure to a suppliers’ brand.” You can see this in the shop’s merchandising, both ambient and chilled, with key brands displayed in their entirety, not jumbled in with other products. Gondola-ends and display tables to having much more room for on country lifestyle goods lending the are used to spotlight on-trend brands ambient lines – pestos, antipasti, oils operation its own distinct flavour. like Peter’s Yard crispbread and and vinegars, etc, which are currently While the original, grand hotel newcomers such as Hebridean Sea under-represented – and particularly frontage was retained during the first Salt. for deli counter foods. phase of building in the early 1990s, Rannoch smoked meats, While loose cheeses currently much of the store is now housed in McSween’s haggis and biscuit brands share space with pies and charcuterie airy, contemporary extensions built such as Jules Distrooper, Teoni’s, in a single deli area, there will soon be around three sides of the large central Corsini, Fudges, Tunnocks and a larger, standalone cheese counter courtyard. Island Bakery are each given The food hall was created their own distinct blocks of towards the end of the CKS O T -S space. 1990s, with an extension ST U M RUAR HOUSE OF B It helps give the food hall built in 2004 that houses h rg bu in House of Ed ad a clean, quite modern feel its flagship butchery, re tb or Sh and, as Thain says, ensures including a glass-sided read tb or Sh rs Walke excellent exposure for each hanging room for locally y Nevis Baker supplier. reared beef and lamb (28ehouses ok Sm “We focus on keeping day hung Scotch beef is a e w ra Inve lmon the identity of each brand. All s smoked sa speciality). od Fo s le Is Summer the Hawkshead relishes are But as FFD went to h haggis of Edinburg together, all the Whitakers press, work was already MacSween’s ery ok chocolates are together. underway on a major Sm ch no Ran onery And that’s a benefit for the extension that will see the land confecti ot Sc of rs Gardine supplier, because if people restaurant move into a large e juice come across it they will be conservatory area, created d Duskin appl an ge ud (f ff ood in Crie w ur overwhelmed by the brand by roofing over part of the D & n Gordo and the range it can offer.” courtyard, and the 10,000 macaroons) se ee It’s also reflected in sq ft food hall substantially ch ay M Cambus O’ the terms he expects from extended. se chee Godminster suppliers. “We never “It will change, but it will & tea ee ff negotiate over volume and all be for the better,” says Brodies co price,” he says. “We see Thain, who is looking forward ey on H ridge Chain B eser ves Edinburgh Pr ight Cottage Del

about 1.4 million visitors a year. That’s what we bring to the party.” This applies to both speciality and mainstream brands. “We don’t mind retailing products that are in supermarkets too, but we have to be competitive on price. That’s paramount, and we’ve done a lot of work on that over the last year. We won’t retail something at a higher price just to reach our margin expectations if it wouldn’t then be fundamentally competitive.” The key is offering a variety of brands at different price points, he adds. “We’ve got Mackay’s and Tiptree, we’ve got Lindt and Green & Black’s. I think Lindt is synonymous with quality chocolate. Mackay’s marmalade is a Scottish product, and some people would buy it as an alternative to Tiptree, but it’s probably cheaper too. “It’s very much about pricepointing. Mackay’s retails around £1.69. It’s probably our least expensive marmalade, and we build from there. We try to cater for everyone’s needs.” But this remains essentially a gourmet food hall, and despite being on the tourist trail it’s not dominated by gift products. “We know we’re a tourist destination,” says Thain, “but that’s not what we portray ourselves as. We’re a luxury goods retailer, and we don’t encourage coach-loads of people. If you get 100 tourists arriving on a bus it can disrupt customer service for everyone else.” House of Bruar has not been immune to the economic woes of recent years, says Thain. “Footfall in the high street was down, and our footfall was down too. The price of petrol had gone up, and that’s a big factor in deciding whether to drive up here or shop more locally.” But he continues: “Things are definitely looking a bit more promising than in the last couple of years.” And after running with the crowd in 2012 by price-promoting heavily, the business went back to a more long-term approach to promotion last year. “We decided at the turn of 2013 that we were not going to continue promoting at that level,” says Thain. Shoppers will continue to see ‘two for £5’ or ‘buy two, get one free’ offers that require them to spend in order to save, but the only deep price-cutting will be on clearance lines. “We’ve had to work extremely hard with suppliers to make sure our prices are competitive, and on in-store tastings,” Thain says, “but we’re not going to run promotions that harm the integrity of the brand or the store.” With the extended food hall due to be fully open by early summer, there should be plenty of scope to reinforce House of Bruar’s luxury food credentials – and tempt those 1.4 million visitors. www.houseofbruar.com

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014


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The new unit has to accommodate Jay Allan’s third-party product development work, as well as Hillside’s fruit cheese production

The flexible kitchen

Case study

Four years from start-up, Devon’s Hillside Speciality Foods is still evolving. So when it moved to new premises, flexibility was essential, as owners Will and Jay Allan told MICK WHITWORTH.


f you’re planning a move to new production premises, here are some tips from Will and Jay Allan: take professional advice first, ‘futureproof’ yourself as far as possible by allowing room for growth – but don’t blow your budget on equipment you may never need. The brothers have certainly racked up valuable experience since setting up Hillside Speciality Foods in Devon in 2009. When they moved to their current facility in the village of Kenn, a few miles of west of Exeter, towards the end of 2013, it was their third production site in four years. The Allans set up Hillside initially to produce membrillo-style fruit cheeses, with experienced restaurant chef Jay providing the culinary expertise while Will focused on the business side of things. Working first out of borrowed kitchen space in an Exeter social club, Jay soon added other cheese accompaniments, including hand-cut biscuits, pickles and chutneys, while developing another business strand as an NPD chef, helping other local firms like meat producer Pipers Farm develop their own new products. Before long, Hillside had moved to a Basepoint serviced business unit on Exeter’s Marsh Barton industrial estate. It had many advantages: all

the next and doing creative NPD for someone else’s brand was getting too much to juggle. “For three years I hated it!” Jay admits. “Someone would ask for 100kg of onion marmalade and I’d think, ‘That’s me out of it for the day’. Then Harrods would order 400 packs of biscuits and that would be it for the week.” The solution was to find flexible premises to handle a still evolving product list, but also to Moving ‘back to the sticks’ had one outsource immediate advantage: access to a some of the £70,000 Rural Enterprise Grant through processes. Devon County Council, which covered First, Hillside joined 40% of the project cost forces with Don Fraser of small-batch specialist when we missed out on a couple Highfield Preserves in Willand, mid of contracts that needed us to have Devon. Highfield now handles Salsa food safety accreditation, production of Hillside’s pickles and including one for M&S.” chutneys. Then it handed over So a second move was needed, biscuit-making to an artisan bakery but to complicate matters the in the West of England. So, of business was still evolving. While Hillside’s own-brand products, just Jay was picking up quality clients the fruit cheeses are still made at its like Harrods and Darts Farm with his home base, although Jay continues hand-crafted products, more of his to personally oversee production of time was being spent on product the other two ranges. development consultancy work The new unit at Kenn is a joint for other businesses, ranging from venture with Hillside’s NPD client local soup-maker Rod & Ben’s to Pipers Farm, which wanted to move Selfridges. its ready-meal and pie production To be baking biscuits one day, away from its butchery operation at making chutneys or fruit cheeses telecoms and other services included in the price, easy access to suppliers and recycling facilities, a zero rateable value and a flexible, shortnotice lease. But it wasn’t built for food production, just a breezeblock shell with an open mezzanine level. Its front roller-shutter door opened straight onto the production area, as did the toilet door, and Will Allan says: “The tipping point came

Cullompton, 18 miles away. The two firms together leased a section of a new industrial unit at Glebe Farm, Kenn, owned by Mandy Pitts and Shaun Ryder. Pitts runs Powderham Food Hall, at nearby Powderham Castle, while her partner has his own well-established Ryders Bakery business, which he had relocated to Glebe Farm in 2012. Figgy’s Puddings, a more seasonal business run by Richie and Jo Evans, is also based here, creating a cluster of small food operations on one site. “There’s a lot of scope for collaboration on things like logistics and waste,” notes Will. Moving “back to the sticks”, as Jay puts it, had one immediate advantage: access to a £70,000 Rural Enterprise Grant through Devon County Council, which covered 40% of the project cost. This enabled them to fit out two units: a 1,000 sq ft production and NPD kitchen for Jay, and a slightly larger unit next door for Pipers’ production, which Hillside can also use for NPD trials and ad hoc production runs. A first-floor office and storage space has been created directly above Hillside’s kitchen. Although it is used for fruit cheese production, Hillside’s unit is the more spartan, with lots of bare stainless steel working surfaces Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014



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January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

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Both the Hillside and Pipers Farm units have been fitted out with a mix of used, reconditioned or ex-display equipment, including fridges and six-burner ranges

for Jay’s NPD, and almost as much space given to storage of herbs, spices and other chef’s ingredients as to cooking equipment. The latter comprises a six-burner Falcon range and a Blue Seal Turbofan 32 Max convection oven, and a small microwave, beneath a made-tomeasure 4m extraction canopy. Pipers’ unit next door is equipped for more serious volumes, including a heavy-duty Rosinox sixburner range and a large Caterquip bratt pan, beneath a 6.4m extraction canopy. (It’s a monster of an extractor, which makes a noise

Production of baked goods and preserves has been contracted out, while Jay focuses on fruit cheeses and NPD work

like an aircraft taking off and draws a lot of cold air into the room. “With hindsight, perhaps we should have split it, so it could be turned on in sections,” says Will. ) Whereas Hillside has a collection of free-standing fridges and freezers, Pipers has two walk-in units constructed as part of the building’s fabric. The Allan brothers oversaw construction and fit-out of both units, with Will using expertise he gained during three years as a project assistant on a £13m building project for Devon County Council. Unless you are really experienced, he says, it’s vital to get expert advice before you start. “It might even be worth thinking about employing a project manager, because it can save you money in the long-term. You need to think about design drawings, a programme of works and all the rules and regs.” He continues: “From the beginning, we knew the basic footprint and sketched out what we thought would work. Then we took it to Chris Law at [catering supplier] Bartlett’s on Marsh Barton, who he said, ‘The sink would work here, the pipes would have to go over there’, and so

on, and came up with the CAD drawings for us, “It cost £1,500 for Bartlett to do drawing we could hand over to the contractors, with all the specs for the different trades. That saves so much time and money, I would have paid double for it.” Conscious that Hillside would soon need to apply for Salsa accreditation, the brothers asked food safety consultant Tayo Irawo to look over the site before building began. A freelance Salsa and BRC auditor, she gave valuable advice on aspects such as separation of

Jay Allan (right) is the chef, while Will looks after business outside the factory door

high-risk and low-risk area, and the location of doors. “It all meant that when the EHO came in from Teignbridge District Council it was ‘great, great, love that…’ and we didn’t have to do any additional spend,” says Will. Not that there were no complications. For example, Pipers found that equipment it had used for many years in its existing premises, such as gas burners and extractors, couldn’t be redeployed in a new unit because it didn’t meet current safety rules. “As soon as you move into a new build you have to meet the latest regulations,” says Will, adding that the same applies to Environmental Health. “EHOs view a new build much more harshly than an existing premises. But that’s why we involved the EHO from the planning stage.” When it comes to equipment, the Allans firmly recommend buying used – provided it has the right certification – unless you are really sure what shape your business will take. “We could easily have spent thousands on a pastry break or chutney-making equipment that we wouldn’t have ended up using,” says Will. Savings can be achieved throughout the build. “All our walls and ceilings were made by South West Coldrooms using panel offcuts from other builds,” says Will. “The were all new – just odd sizes. It’s basically cobbled together to make it fit, But again it probably saved us £10,000-12,000.” Having initially been told their concrete floors should be vinylcoated, the brothers learned that standard food-safe floor paint would be fine for Salsa accreditation. “We sealed the floor for about £20, then coated it with a non-slip B&Q floor paint,” says Will. “That cost about £150, instead of several thousand to have a vinyl floor laid.” One major consideration wherever heavy-duty cookers are involved is power – particularly if you might need to add more cookers in future – and it’s one area where Hillside and Pipers have had to compromise. “The feed into this building cost about £30,000,” says Will Allan, “and Pipers have an electric bratt pan that, if you turn it on, takes 60% of the capacity for the two units. “You want to future-proof it, but it would be another £30,000 to have Western Power dig up the farm and bring another supply in.” If they eventually need a second bratt pan, he says, it might have to be gas-powered, not electric. But at least, like the rest of this project, it will have been planned for. www.hillsidespecialityfoods.com www.pipersfarm.com www.bartlett.uk.com

Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014


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artisan food production

What’s new for small producers? The latest gadget from Electronic Temperature Instruments is a handheld thermometer you could use standing on your head. The new Temptest 1 has a patented 360° rotating display that means it can be read from any angle, in either hand, making it easier to check temperatures in hard-to-reach spots like the top of a multideck fridge or the inside of a smoking kiln. It also features an “intelligent” backlit LCD display, which lights the display whenever ambient light levels are low, and costs £50.00 plus VAT. www.etiltd.com

Comark says automating temperature checks in fridges, freezers and hot food holding cabinets using WiFi data loggers “eliminates the risk of mistakes and saves valuable time”. Its Diligence WiFi temperature and humidity loggers can collect data around the clock, which is then sent wirelessly through the user’s WiFi network to a PC for viewing using the Diligence software package. This allows users to generate reports and look at historical data, helping with food safety and HACCP compliance. www.comarkinstruments.com

A range of Christine le Tennier flavoured ‘gastro-pearls’, Cookal plate decorating pens and the Chocolatier Robert range of single origin Madagascan couverture chocolate are among the lines added to HB Ingredients’ range in the past year. HB is the UK’s largest independent distributor of chocolate in the UK, doubling its sales in the last five years to reach £11.8 million in 2013. It now has over 1,800 product lines in total, covering “the sweet side of food ingredients”. They range from sprinkles for cake makers to a new range of JoyGelato ice cream products from IRCA in Italy. HB now operates dedicated websites for ice cream, home baking ingredients and foodservice clients, as well as its main chocolate-focused site. www.hbingredients.co.uk


The new LP545 weigh-labelling system from Dibal UK has been designed specifically to meet the needs of smaller producers. Built around the electronics and software of Dibal’s D500 range of retail scales, but in a more rugged stainless steel case, the LP545 is said to offer a high level specification at an affordable price. It can either be used as a standalone thermal label printer for fixed-weight/ fixed-price products or be linked to a weighing platform to handle weights up to 3,000kg. The unit’s memory can hold up to to 10,000 items and it can print ingredient listings, marketing messages and more. www.dibal.com

Windsor Food Machinery has added the new Lynx table-top vacuum packer to its range of Henkelman vac-packers. It features a full colour wide screen, a user-friendly interface, six language options and an easy-to-clean flat working plate. Windsor has been a UK agent for Henkelman vacpackers for 16 years. It says the advantage of the Lynx is that it can generate labels as it packs. So, when coupled with a thermal label printer, it gives full HACCP traceability. Programmable content for product labels includes the packing date, the name of the operator who packed it, product name, expiry date, storage temperature, vacuum levels and more. www.windsorfoodmachinery.com


January-February 2014 · Vol.15 Issue 1

Artisan producers struggling to write their first HACCP plan could benefit from a new service offered by food safety specialist Verner Wheelock Associates. A longestablished provider of food safety and HACCP training courses from basic Level 2 to Advanced Level 4, it has recently added HACCP consultancy services, which it says are proving “extremely successful, especially with specialist producers”.“If you’ve just started a small business it’s often hard to know where to start with HACCP,” says MD Alison Wheelock. “Our consultants give you specific advice and support to help you write a HACCP plan from scratch. If you’re already an established business we can assist with reviewing and improving existing HACCP plans.” Recent clients range from a goats’ cheese producer to a Michelinstarred restaurant.

An Irish artisan preserves-maker is among a number of firms that have recently installed small-scale cooking vessels from Liberty Process incorporating built-in mixers. With sizes starting at 30 litres, these machines give accurate temperature control with continual mixing, according to Liberty’s David Henn. They are suitable for making sauces, soups, jams, chutneys, preserves and other semi-viscose liquid food products, and can cost under £7,000. “Before Christmas, we supplied a 70-litre braising pan for a manufacturer of jams and chutneys in Ireland,” Henn says. “As they’re in a rural area, they didn’t have natural gas, so the machine was supplied suitable for propane bottled gas. “It was also fitted with a front outlet valve for easy decanting into jars.” The same model was also supplied to a Cumbrian artisan producer of fruit-based soft dessert cheeses. www.libertyprocess.biz

A “revolutionary” gluten free crumb that can replace rusk as a sausage ingredient has been introduced by CMT Continental Meat Technology. Made from corn, it is said to have properties very similar to rusk. Sausages made with this GMO-free crumb are “virtually indistinguishable” from conventional products, says CMT, with consumers unable to tell the difference in blind tastings. It has used the same crumb to developed a gluten-free version of its traditional sausage mix and says the crumb can also be used as a coating or panade for breaded pork (schnitzel), turkey breast and other meats. A gluten-free batter is also available for this purpose. www.continentalmeattechnology. co.uk

A familiar name to anyone who has hired fridges or freezers at a major food trade show, global rental specialist Lowe Refrigeration is launching a new, more customerfriendly website this spring According to Lowe’s Rachel Reid, it will include an “easy search facility”, enabling clients to search by customer type or application to get the unit most suited to their needs. Equipment available for hire includes a vast range of chilled display counters, refrigerated multi deck displays, unique refrigeration units, freezers and modular walk-in cold rooms. The new site will also offer a new fridge branding facility and refrigeration servicing. www.loweref.co.uk

 

classified • baking equipment

Do you make PIES or other sorts of pastry products? We make incredibly versatile PIE MACHINES VISIT www.johnhuntbolton.co.uk TO SEE OUR RANGE OF MACHINES, PLUS VIDEO CLIPS OF THE MACHINES IN OPERATION OR CALL + 44 (0) 1204 521831 / 532798 OR FAX + 44 (0) 1204 527306

Call our sales team on 01747 825200 today to discuss the right classified heading for your equipment, ingredients or services

 Packaging Ltd • food processing machinery

• ingredients

Suppliers of bottling and packaging equipment to artisan producers in the food production industry. Depositing & filling machines Capping and crowning machines Labelling and coding machines Label dispensers Tel: 01920 484050 E: nosborne@acosales.co.uk www.acosales.co.uk

The heart of UK food manufacturing


Sugar Dextrose Sweetened condensed milk

OR EMAIL spencer@johnhuntbolton.co.uk




Offline sleeve and watch strap band feeders Ink jet printers - 5yr warranty on new units Hot Foil & Thermal Transfer Printers Laser coding systems

Butter Dairy powders Bespoke dairy blends

Tel: (01454) 411446 sales@garrettingredients.co.uk www.garrettingredients.co.uk

JOHN HUNT (Bolton) Ltd Rasbottom St, Bolton, England BL3 5BZ

• baking equipment

• packaging

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• labelling

• labelling

Ser ving the Food and Drink industr y since 1980


Consistent & quick label application for a wide range of bottles, jars or containers.

Self adhesive labels and swing tags for food and drinks Visit our website for examples of our work and testimonials www.inkreadible.com or ring us to discuss your requirements 0800 096 2720 email: sales@inkreadible.com


Bottle fillers & cappers also available.

DEPOSITORS & PACKAGING SYSTEMS MEATS/SEAFOODS & READY MEALS Depositors for sauces and dressings Pot fillers and liquid fillers Vertical Form Fill Seal Thermoformers Tray sealers Pumps

Tel:in01404 892100 All prices are GB Pounds Sterling and are supplied ex-VAT and ex-Works unless otherwise stated. The goods hereby supplied shall remain the property of the seller until such time as payment for the product has been made in full. Any discrepancies to be made in01962 761761 Email: sales@vigoltd.com For more information call writing within 7 days of receipt. All goods are supplied against our standard terms and conditions which are available on request. www.printsafe.co.uk info@printsafe.co.uk www.vigoltd.com E & O.E. Company Reg. GB996055 VAT Reg. No. 801981926 • bottles & jars

• ingredients

Now with 3 years

• labelling

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• refrigeration

warranty on all models


Jumbo 42 £1469

Real baking – real easy Tel 44 (0)1706 364103 mike@becketts.co.uk www.becketts.co.uk www.bakeryequipment.co.uk

Tel: 01233 733737

sales@windsorfoodmachinery.com * subject to terms and conditions

• bottles & jars

• ingredients

HS HS French Flint Ltd. FF

Refractometers for Quality Control

Speciality Glassware, for the more discerning producer.

Unit 4G, The Leathermarket, Weston Street, London SE1 3ER Tel: 020 7407 3200 Fax: 020 7237 9093 www.FrenchFlint.com


www.refractometershop.com Vol.15 Issue 1 · January-February 2014



January-February 2014 路 Vol.15 Issue 1

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